On Education among other things

The September 2007 issue of Linux Journal has a column by Jon “Maddog” Hall on education. That sort of brought back memories of days long back. When we were tinkering around with the notion of getting our teachers into the game we learnt a large number of lessons:

+ creating an “alternative curriculum” that uses only FOSS tools to teach

+ setting up the repository of the FOSS tools so that they can test them

+ ensure that the documentation for the tools and the OS are kept at one place and mostly accessible via a browser

+ provide compelling reasons as to how FOSS will help their students

I think I am just getting old 🙂

The Bengali bits on Orkut seem to be off-key

It says আমার স্ক্র্যাপবুক and স্ক্র্যাপবই to mean the same thing for more fun check this. And of course … সংকেত: কাকে আপনি জানেন? আরও সার্চ অপশনগুলির জন্য সার্চ বক্সে বিষয়টি টাইপ করুন অথবা পাশের বির্বধিত কাঁচে ক্লিক করুন। They need to have a bugzilla with immediate effect.

Mashup Camp organised by PLUG

I attended my first ever meeting of the PLUG  yesterday (1st Sept 2007) where the topic of discussion was the Mashup Camp. More details can be found here. I think the means to participate both in terms of ideas and/or code-push are available from this page. Looks like it might turn out to be a nice gathering once the camp gets underway.  Bhaskaracharya Pratishthana are the “facilitators for the space and infrastructure”.

The meeting also had an interesting presentation from Sarvangin Vikas Sanstha about their new software release.

Why are GSoC participants being spammed ?

Dear XXXX,

I found your name while looking for xxxx in the Google Summer of Code program. It must have been a great challenge to work with some of the brightest college students on open source projects. The same skills that are needed for success in an open source program – proficiency in programming, creativity, and raw intellectual ability – are highly valued in our staff. Based on your accomplishments, you seem to be especially well-placed to help us find people with strong academic backgrounds whose areas of specialization might be particularly relevant to the work we do. Do you have any colleagues who stand out in your mind as possessing unusual raw ability even among a relatively gifted population of peers? If so, we would be enormously grateful if you’d bring them to our attention, even if you believe that the individual in question might not be looking for a career opportunity at the moment; many of our longest-tenured and most successful employees had not previously considered the possibility of a career on Wall Street (or with one of our technology ventures) before being contacted by the firm. Of course, if you yourself might be inclined to explore opportunities with us, I encourage you to send us a copy of your resume.

Thank you again for your invaluable assistance. I’ve attached below a brief company description you can forward to students or other appropriate contacts. Finally, please don’t hesitate to let me know if, for some reason, you’d prefer not to be contacted again in this capacity in the future.

Sincerely,

Julie Jaramillo
The D. E. Shaw group
39th Floor, Tower 45
120 West 45th Street
New York, NY 10036
juliana.jaramillo@deshaw.com
www.deshaw.com

___________________

The D. E. Shaw group is a global investment and technology development firm encompassing a number of closely related entities with approximately $35 billion in aggregate investment capital. Since its organization in 1988 by Dr. David E. Shaw, a former computer science professor at Columbia University, the firm has earned an international reputation for financial innovation, technological leadership, and an extraordinarily distinguished staff. While many of the D. E. Shaw group’s activities focus on the use of advanced mathematical and computational techniques to trade in various domestic and international securities markets, the firm also devotes substantial resources to the conceptualization, early-stage development, and financing of internally developed start-up ventures. Projects now under development include a groundbreaking effort to build a special-purpose supercomputer designed to fundamentally transform the process of drug discovery.

The principal underpinning of our firm’s success is an extraordinary staff of exceptionally gifted professionals, each among the very best in his or her field. Our staff includes a number of Putnam Fellows, Rhodes and Marshall Scholars, the winners of more than 20 medals in the International Math Olympiad, IAS members, and other world-class researchers and practitioners from a wide range of scientific disciplines. Our work environment also distinguishes us in our industry. While we are a motivated and productive group, we do not work long hours for their own sake. Casual dress and informality are the rule, as is a strongly entrepreneurial culture that encourages creativity and personal development. Employee satisfaction runs very high, as evidenced by strikingly low staff turnover at both junior and senior levels. In fact, many of us feel that the environment at D. E. Shaw provides some of the most attractive features of academia along with considerably greater rewards.

A background in finance is neither required nor expected; we only ask that you have a genuine interest in applying your talents within the private sector. If you think you might be interested, or if you would like more information, I encourage you to send a copy of your resume to Juliana Jaramillo at Juliana.Jaramillo@deshaw.com. We look forward to hearing from you.