I was fortunate to visit IIT Bombay for a duration of three months, from October to December 2016. I became part of a well-established research lab, SEIL, which works in energy sustainability. The team members are dynamic, diverse consisting of PhDs, MTechs, research staff and one driver (Lab Head). Also, we had a CZAR, but a caring one. Some members have expertise in an embedded side and some are great in data churning and few are all-rounders. Overall, the team is a mix of nerds, enthusiasts and of course procrastinators!
First two weeks were terrible for me, where I felt like an alien on campus. There were various reasons for this felling – i) Everyone was engrossed in their red velvet cubicles either tweaking smart meter, playing with sensors, soldering boards or doing some incompressible stuff, which only they can decode. ii) administrative related issues, iii) and Mumbai residential flat rules. But all thanks to weekly “group meetings” and “Smart ICT” classes, which broke the frozen state and I felt like at my home institute. The best part of the class was that almost every week an eminent figure used to come, deliver his best and made us crazy for one and half hour. I rate this course as my best course I have ever attended, in which the instructor used to deliver lectures in the form of stories and made us awestruck. Remaining ten weeks were enjoying during which work went smoothly.
Well, I stayed outside the campus, but I survived for the first month with the food of Phoenix (H10), second month with Woodland (H8) and the last month with Queen of the campus, the enlightened abode (H1).
Some NP questions which I was never able to solve include:
- How KReSIT got the best building architecture award! Once one of my visitors even commented that whole IIIT-D can get accommodated inside KReSIT!
- Why I got embarrassed with the technical fest of IITB and I felt bad in Mood Indigo, Asia’s biggest cultural fest.
- Where were my lab mates during Mood Indigo!
- If Saraswat bank has branches in America, then why Canara bank ATM failed to dispense money to a 90 minutes clowner during demonetisation!
The things which I am going to miss include:
- The playground: where the maintainers make it ready for every type of game and you feel fully occupied with the 7 – 9 long symmetrical, colored running tracks. These tracks are used by both fast runners and crawling thinkers. Also, you will find a life outside hectic schedules and people doing some unknown exercise which you do not find even on youtube
- The Central Library: A well-lit whitish building from both inside and outside. A calm place where you find students either in deep studies or watching videos to shun frustration.
- The queen of the campus: A place where you relax and watch 20 minutes of TV after regular meals.
Finally, three months stay finished and it was my last working day on campus. On this day, I had ten minutes of wisdom sermon from my guide; then all lab members assembled and had a home made Cake (Thanks for the delicious cake). And to my surprise, I was requested to give a speech of above details, which I did. Oh, I forgot to thank Eduroam facility, otherwise, I might have suffered a lot on campus.
Our IIT Bombay team at one of the lab lunches
Concluding with the statement of my guide, “Once a SEILER, always a SEILER”.