My interview on Microsoft’s JobsBlog

November 20, 2006

Last week, Priya (recruiter from Microsoft) interviewed me and posted my interview on Microsoft’s Jobsblog. It is even more great because of the fact that Priya was not my recruiter. She just met me on a brownbag meeting (jargon for informal meetings at Microsoft) and later interviewed me. This is the kind of openness that Microsoft employees have among them. Its just like a big community.

I remember another incident as well. I met a Microsoft employee at Seoul airport. On knowing that we (one of my friends was with me) are going to join Microsoft, he became really happy and even offered to drop us at our place in his car on reaching Seattle.


First Eid away from Home

October 26, 2006

On Monday (i.e. Oct 23, 2006), I celeberated my first Eid away from home. We had a breakfast after Eid Prayer and then I came to office for sometime. Then I came back and slept (perhaps I forgot to tell you that I didn’t sleep last night :P). Had a dinner with friends. That’s all :).

You can see a couple of pictures at my flickr photos. The first photo was taken Eid Prayer while second photo was taken after breakfast.

I have passed my driving test in the first go :). Though I didn’t do well in parallel parking and reversing the car  but still I managed to pass it.


Yeah I am back

October 10, 2006

I am back at blogging after almost a month. What has been happening in these days is that I moved from Pakistan to Seattle. Joined Microsoft on Oct 2nd, 2006. I still don’t have a good laptop at home (borrowed it from a friend) and have dial up Internet (yes I said dial-up). So I’m still not reading any blogs. Planning to get my laptop (and high speed internet) soon and probably things will be normalized after that.

And about being in Microsoft. Its an exciting ride so far. This Seattle/Redmond area is beautiful. Have so many good places to visit. The relocation process was very smooth. I didn’t have to worry about anything (except cooking – exceptions are always there :P). And about work. Work environment is great. People are friendly and helpful.

Me getting settled gradually. Somethings have amazed me. The communication services are very expensive here (as compared to Pakistan). Sending an International SMS costs $0.20 in US while in Pakistan it used to be $0.025. Receiving an International SMS costs $.10 here while in Pakistan it was absolutely free. Incoming was totally free in Pakistan while here they charge for incoming as well. I don’t know why is it so :(.

I have passed the Written Driving Test in the first go. Lets see what I do in the Road Test.

Lets hope that I can continue blogging 🙂


PUCIT Reunion (First Two Batches)

September 11, 2006

Yesterday (September 10, 2006), I attended a reunion of PUCIT students (First two batches only – BCSS01 and BCSF01). I was in the second batch — so some of them were my seniors and all others were my friends. It was nice to see so many people after a year or so (Every person has a close circle of friends who keep on meeting regularly but to see all your batch-mates at one place is like going back to good old university days). It was more special for me and I will be soon leaving for Microsoft and there is a very remote chance that I could attend future reunions.

There is another thing that makes it so special. I got this idea first of all to arrange a reunion (Yes I started it). I worked so hard to make this idea a reality because I wish and hope that an annual reunion becomes a tradition (We were the first two batches of PUCIT, so we had to start this tradition). The coming reunions will be having more participants but I can always boast that I initiated this idea and 70 people came in the first reunion :).

Initiating an idea is another thing (Things are easier said than done). Implementing an idea requires team work. Rehan did a wonderful job deciding all the Food Menu and venue etc. Sir Waqar and Anzar provided their full support in opening a booking office at PUCITCS (PUCIT Computer Society). 

Kashif gave a very good description of reunion in his own unorthodox way.

Ayaz has blogged about this reunion as well. 

Aleem came to attend this all the way from Dubai. Lets see when he describes his experience. Personally I am waiting for Haroon Saeed’s remarks on this as well. Lets see what he has to say if he decides to blog about this.

It was a memorable day. You can see one of the photographs on my Flickr photos.


A Priceless Picture

September 4, 2006

A few days back, my friend Farhan Hafeez sent me a picture. This picture is priceless for me. It was taken on March 22, 2001 (Yes I still remember the date). It was our last day in Government College (Now Government College University) Lahore. Most of the people in the picture were 12 yrs old friends (10 yrs of School and 2 yrs of College). For me, this was a 4 yrs old friendship (2 yrs of Matriculation and 2 years of College). I was a relatively new one in the group but was so much well adjusted that most people now think that I was in their school (I had people asking me, “Hey, in which section of school were you? I remember you were there but cannot remember your section.”).

We all had a wonderful time together and then split up. Some went to Medical colleges, some to Engineering University and others to Computer and Business studies etc. Now some of these are in different cities and countries. All these people in this picture rarely meet but whenever any two of us meet, its an exciting day. 

 

There is an old adage – “Make new friends, keep the old. One is silver, the other is gold.”

These people and this picture reminds of a wonderful, carefree College life a.k.a “Those Were the Best Days of My Life“.

Here is the picture (Its not in a very good shape as it was probably scanned but who cares).

 


And I still need to learn some cooking

August 31, 2006

Oh ! When in December 2005, I got selected for Microsoft and I was told that I could join in October 2006 – I thought it is never going to come. However its almost coming and now I think I am unprepared. Finishing couple of projects is not the most problematic issue right now. Most problematic issue is perhaps SHOPPING (No, I don’t like shopping that much:P) and I have a HUGE list.

And I still need to learn some basics of cooking. I remembered this cooking stuff because I came across this site.

By the way, the followings web-sites have got a lot of Pakistani recipes. I must remember all of these and they will be handy once I am in Seattle.

http://www.contactpakistan.com/pakfood

http://www.desicookbook.com/categories.aspx

http://www.urdupoint.com/cooking (This website is in Urdu).

http://www.pakirecipes.com/recipes/recipes.php

http://www.nicepakistan.com/food.htm

There are many more 😛 but I have to do shopping as well .. hehe :D.


My Celebrity Look-Alikes

August 20, 2006

This is really funny. Visit MyHeritage Face Recognition. It requires free registration. Upload your photograph and it will tell you that you resemble this and this celebrity (also displays the percentage of resemblance).

Now look at my results with different photographs.

Here is the first one

 

Here is the second one

 

Here is the third one

 

Here is the fourth one

 

Here is the fifth one.

 

I have tried different images of mine and the results have been stunningly different. It means the algorithm is still not very good. However, it might be the start of searching within the images (Web-based even).

Although I don’t know the names of the most of these people but some computer algorithm suggests that we look alike :P. Have Fun !

P.S. If anyone of my friend tries this, do send me the links to your resemblances as well.