Category Archives: MySelf

Yaay! I became a Xamarin Certified Mobile Developer! :D

So finally on 9th of June 2017, I became a Xamarin Certified Mobile Developer. So here’s my experience of the whole Xamarin University, Certification Exam, and some tips and tricks that might help you! 🙂

Well I’ve been using Xamarin Platform for over 2 and half years now, but I never really thought of getting the official Xamarin Certification until recently my boss encouraged me to and financially supported it.

Down the memory lane of my Mobile Development enthusiasm…

So here’s a little sharing of memories down the memory lane and some tips for getting the Xamarin Certification.

I first started off developing mobile apps on Android platform, given my love for Java programming back in the early days. So I self learned Android App Development back in the middle of 1st year of my college using online tutorials and documentation.

Then at the end of 1st year, I was introduced to Windows Phone App development, which I got completely hooked on it, and then Windows Store App Development and so on, where I ended up publishing over 20+ apps to the Microsoft App Store during the next few years.

Next lucky enough I got a mobile developer opportunity at a medium size local company where it was for Xamarin Mobile Development back in 2014 December. 😀

Learning the whole Xamarin Platform by myself, I ended up completing a full fledged mobile app for that project in that company using Xamarin Forms.

Finally in 2015 December, got an overseas opportunity in Singapore for a Xamarin Mobile Developer position, which is where I ended up mastering the Xamarin Platform, Xamarin Android/iOS native development, hacking to push boundaries of the platform and so on and finally living my dream of being a Mobile App Developer. 😀

And that is where I’m currently working at June 2017, enjoying everyday of it while diving in the goodness of Xamarin Mobile Development. 😉


Xamarin University Training and Certification Preparation…

I was lucky enough my company sponsored me for Xamarin University Subscription. Otherwise its about 1000 USD for 1 year subscription or there a new monthly subscription plan with a very reasonable pricing.

Once you have the subscription you get full access for all the incredible learning materials and live lecture sessions in Xamarin University.

Is it worth it?

Now although at this point I already had like 2 years of Xamarin Mobile developement experience, I must admit that I learned way more and strengthened my knowledge on Xamarin top to bottom thanks to Xamarin University. So if you ask me if it’s worth it? at least for the Knowledge? DEFINITELY YES!

Mandatory Sessions

There’s a mandatory list of sessions that you have to complete before taking the exam, you could completely them either by attending the live lecture sessions or taking self-learn sessions (if available). Yes, some of those mandatory sessions doesn’t have the ‘self-learn’ option yet, so you have to attend to a live lecture session and get your attendance marked for it. 🙂

Instructors?

Mark my words, the instructors in Xamarin University are top-notch, and industry experts with a lot of knowledge and experience, there’s no doubt about them. You can ask anything from them regarding the session, even while the session is going on, they are very helpful and friendly, not to mention their great teaching skills. 🙂

Memorizing vs Understanding!

Do not MEMORIZE! just UNDERSTAND the content! The sessions are structured in a way that it helps you to actually understand the content with step by step exercises. I’ve never taken a single note on any of the sessions, nor tried to memorize stuff(although I’m not very good at it either), just followed through sessions and focused well during them. That’s all it takes!

Anything else?

You can take any live lecture session as many times as you wish, until you feel comfortable with the topic. There’s also many extra sessions you could attend to improve your knowledge in Azure, UI Test, Xamarin Android, Xamarin iOS. It’s good to keep in mind that the exam mandatory sessions are mainly about Xamarin Forms cross platform related topics, so you don’t have to worry if you don’t have much in-depth knowledge about native mobile development. 🙂

They also provide you a Study-Guide check-list to go through to make sure you’re prepared for what’s actually required: https://university.xamarin.com/content/certification#study-guide

Once you’ve completed the mandatory sessions, then you become eligible to sit for the certification exam!


Certification Examination!

So the Certificate Exam is a 3 hours, MCQ exam (Multiple Choice Question) which has 150 questions, and you should score over 80% in order to pass the exam.

The questions scope…

The questions are going to be completely based on the mandatory sessions in Xamarin University. Heavily focused on the Xamarin.Forms cross platform related topics. Personally I did not get any questions that are out of the scope.

So how were the questions…

If you’ve got a solid knowledge on the mandatory sessions, then you have nothing to worry about. Not keep this in mind, about 40% of the questions are straight and easy, but the rest are not going to be hard, but tricky, meaning it’s going to be little bit twisted, so you need to pay good attention to the details in each question before you pick the answer. 😉

Understand the content in the sessions, not memorize!

Basically you won’t be able to make it through the exam if you’re just trying to ‘memorize’ everything in your head, you need to have a ‘good understanding’ of the session content, in order to answer the tricky 60% of the questions.

After the exam?

Once you finish the exam, you get the results immediately. 😉 Then its time to PARRTTAAYYY!!! 😀

Xamarin University and Certification benefits!

First of all the incredible amount of knowledge and experience you gain in the whole process of Xamairn University and the Certification is priceless.

Not to mention the global recognition as Xamarin Certified Mobile Developer, having the official certificate directly validates you as someone who actually knows your way around Xamarin-stuff. Although it does not prove you as an ‘expert’, which is totally dependent on your personal industry experience.

Access to Xamarin DevConnect portal, to showcase your portfolio and connect with fellow developers.

There are few other awesome benefits you get according to Xamarin official site as follows. Certification is valid for 1 year from the date you have passed the exam. Certifications can be verified on our public Xamarin Certified Developers page.

Receive a badge, fun Xamarin swag, and an invitation to join the official Xamarin Certified Developers community on LinkedIn.

Cool, so what do I get to show off?

Except for the massive amount of knowledge and experience I gained from the Xamarin University Sessions and Training, here are some other show-off stuff I got after being certified.

So brace yourselves for some self promotional bragging! 😛

Xamarin Certified Developer Verification Online:

https://university.xamarin.com/certification?q=Udara@xamariners.com#verify

You get a link that can be shared online for the verification of your Certification status. This is the source you could include in your LinkedIn or personal portfolio for the verification.

Xamarin University Profile Badge: 

Once you get the certification, your Xamarin University profile gets updated as such.

Xamarin Certified Developer Certification (soft copy): 

You actually get a PDF version of your certification (here is a screenshot of it).

Bunch of Xamarin Certified Developer badge Images (HD):

Then you get a whole bunch of Certified Mobile Developer badges in low, mid and high resolution for you to share on any of your websites or portfolios. 🙂

Xamarin DevConnect Profile:

You get access to Xamarin DevConnect, the official Xamarin Certified Developer portal from Xamarin, where you can publish your portfolio, connect with fellow certified developers from all over the world, and open up yourself for new opportunities.

https://devconnect.xamarin.com/profile/389


Well that’s it all I got for now… 😀

Although some claim that you get kind of a Xamarin souvenir trophy and a goodie bag by mail, but I’m yet to get any of that. lol. *fingers cross* 😛

So If anyone needs any help or clarifications regarding Xamarin Certification, I’m more than happy to help, drop me a mail or comment down in the post. 🙂

To get started:  https://www.xamarin.com/university

Good luck everyone with your Xamarin Certification! 🙂

Cheers!

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I am a Developer and I Code with ‪#‎VisualStudio‬ ! ;)

I code with Visual Studio 2

I am a Developer and I Code with #VisualStudio. 😀 Build your own Visual Studio profile today at aka.ms/myVisualStudio!
Yep that’s me, that hyper-active kid in the photo lol 😛
Kudos to whoever created this simply awesome tool. 😀
– Udara Alwis
[ÇøŋfuzëРSøurcëÇødë]

Few words about the ÇøŋfuzëÐ SøurcëÇødë Blogging Style ! ;)

Yes I am a Developer! A Software Engineer by career!

But truth be told, I’m not the typical type of software-engineer-developer-geek ! 😛

I’m a hyper-active, overjoyed, crazy enthusiastic, energized, optimistic human being! 😉

I often go on Adventures, Hiking, Running, Cycling and Basketball, also includes Socializing and talking to People in Public…

I run a lot ! literally like a mad man, and I’m addicted to it. It makes me feel free, refreshed, de-stressed, energized, hyped up, and allows me to push myself beyond the physical limitations. Hence it keeps reminding me that nothing is impossible as long as I keep on pushing myself without giving up.

I enjoy every single moment of my life, seeing the positive perspective of everything that happens around me. And I never regret any decisions I have ever made. I like making others happy and cheering up people around me is something I enjoy a lot. 😀

Yes! obviously I’m always cheered up! 😛 that’s probably the easiest way to recognize me from any crowd lol! 😉

I do a lot of crazy random stuff! 😀

I truly enjoy helping others, teaching others new stuff, I’m not very good at teaching though, but I enjoy engaging in such activities to the fullest.
So basically whenever I’m blogging the same chemical reactions fires up in my brain which is responsible for the above, thereby almost all the time my blog articles ends up being a hyper active conversation lol! 😛

So you may find my blog articles UNPROFESSIONAL most of the time! but I DO NOT CARE! Hence blogging programming articles is something I do for fun and I enjoy it insanely. 😉 And yes this is probably going to be one of the weirdest tech-blogs you have ever seen given my unprofessional-blogging-style! lol 😉
Well I couldn’t care less as long as I share the knowledge across the articles, in a very friendly, easy to understand manner for even a high school kid could understand.

So you got any complains about the ÇøŋfuzëÐ SøurcëÇødë Blogging Style? Don’t bother complaining! 😀 As ÇøŋfuzëÐ SøurcëÇødë wouldn’t ever care! 😛

Cheers!

Stay Awesome fellas! 😀

Nǐ hǎo ma! fellow awesome developers ! ;)

Woot Woot! I’m back fellas! Yeah, it’s been a while since I have last been in this blog-sphere…

To keep it short, I was extremely busy last few months due to some awesome career related changes in my life. 😀

Probably you are wondering what’s with the “Nǐ hǎo ma!”, yeah that’s how you say hello! in Chinese and I have moved to Singapore fellas!
(PS – I’m self learning Chinese these days with the help of some colleagues here lol 😛 )

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Flickr Album of some sceneries in Singapore – https://www.flickr.com/photos/confuzed-source-code/albums/72157660613627064

Yep, that’s right. Last November, I got recruited by a company in Singapore as a Xamarin Mobile Engineer, so I moved to Singapore from Sri Lanka, and settled down there. 😉
Hence I couldn’t keep in touch with my blog, but now things are completely settling down with my new life in Singapore, I have finally managed to get back on my blog-sphere.

I have been doing some really interesting and challenging work at my new company related to Xamarin, so I’m looking forward to share a lot of cool stuff with you guys in the coming weeks.

So let’s get this going fellow Awesome developers! 😀

Cheers! 😉

Stay Awesome! 😀

How it Feels like to be truly Satisfied and fallen in Love with your Job …

Before I begin, I am currently working as a Software Engineer at an Europe based IT company here in Sri Lanka. And YES ! surprisingly I am truly satisfied with my Job ! 😀

But some of you might be wondering what qualifies me to define the fine line between true job satisfaction and dissatisfaction. To keep it short, I have been to the both ends, and to elaborate let me give you a little insight of my story…

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So here is my Story…

I finished my degree by the age of 21, and right after that I got job offers from three famous companies in Sri Lanka after successfully passing through all their interviews. So what did I do ? like every other excited-inexperienced-smart graduate, I chose the Job offer with the highest salary and accommodation without considering my passion for innovation, creativity and new technologies as a fresh college graduate.

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Everything was great and going smooth except for the job didn’t turned out to be what I was expecting, so I started to get bored of it. So after completing a considerable work period, I left the job, hoping for a different next step. Learning one of the biggest lessons of my life, when it comes to your Career, never choose money over your life’s passion… 🙂

A Little break for Life…

So for few months, I took a little break, did some freelancing, tried to start off something of my own. But mostly I guess, I just wanted to take a break and refocus on my passion. 🙂 So after two or three months, I got a new Job offer which seemed kind of interesting… 😉 So I thought of giving it a try.

A new Hope…

And I started off working, but I didn’t keep much hopes as I had for my first job, because I didn’t want to get disappointed and suffer later on. But surprisingly after few days of working, I fell in love with that job. I started to love every single day at work. It was the kind of job I have been dreaming to have, filled with innovation, new technologies, and experimentation. And whenever I got home, I couldn’t wait to go back to work the next day… 😉 My life started changing in so many ways since then, and after a long time I was feeling fulfilled about my life…

So starting from having a disappointing career experience and then ending up with a truly satisfied career experience… let me share some of my own Experience of How it Feels like to be Truly Satisfied with your Job… 😀
And Yes, I know this “satisfaction” may or may not last forever or for a long time, as nothing is permanent and everything is constantly changing in this universe by its nature, I’m really valuing and and enjoying it to the fullest while it lasts… After all, change is Inevitable ! 😉 That is Life !

So how does it really Feel ?

Now I should tell you, I have been observing and analyzing my own experience and behaviors regarding this since the beginning whereas I have been collecting facts to write this article since over 9 month. So summing up all the facts, Lemme being… 🙂

You can’t wait till you get back to work next day…

This is the first feeling you will encounter, at the end of the working day, you won’t be able wait till you get back to work on the next day. You prefer staying at office and keep on working even after office hours. Mostly you will wait till the security guards closes the office and shuts down all the light. This used to happen to me all the time, specially during the first 6 months, I was among the last few to leave office. (Later I forced myself not to wait till they close the office lol)
You may get forced to leave office being worried, thinking you couldn’t wait more longer and keep on working. And you may go home after closing the office, but still you will be impatiently waiting till the next day morning to get back to work. 😉

Weekends ? You will be counting hours till Monday!

Oh please, while your friends are waiting for the Weekends to arrive with all their #TBT #TGIF #ThankGodItsFriday and #FinallyItsFriday hashtags, you will hate it when the Weekend arrives. Yes it is true, when you are truly satisfied with your job, you won’t even think of the Weekends to arrive, in fact you wish if there were no weekend. And during your weekends, you will be literally counting hours for it to over and get back to work on Monday! While your friends be like,  #IHateMondays #OhShitItsMonday, and there you would be like all pumped up for work, counting hours for the Monday to begin. The best feeling when you are truly satisfied with your Job is that, when everyone is hating their Mondays at office, you would be loving the Mondays, you would be super energetic and pumped up to begin your work. Yep I know, sounds funny… but that is what happens when you are truly satisfied with your Job ! 😉

You will be like, Thank God It’s Monday #ThankGodItsMonday #TGIM #ILoveMondays…

Simply put, you are gonna love Mondays ! Like I mentioned earlier this is one of the best feelings you would ever encounter. While everyone is hating Mondays, you would absolutely love Mondays, and you would be thanking whoever the guardian higher power you believe in.. 😉 You would be counting hours during weekends and once the Monday arrives, you would be super energetic and pumped up to begin your work while everyone is cursing their Mondays. Personally this is by far one of the best feelings I have ever encountered, because I used to hate Mondays during my previous job, but now I absolutely LOVE MONDAYS ! ❤ 😀

You wish if you could work on Weekends as well…

Yes weirdly enough, you are gonna wish if you could work on Weekends as well. There was this one time I couldn’t bear it up and I asked the manager if I could come to office on Saturdays and keep on working, where he advised me not to even think of it and go out to enjoy real life. lol (whereas later I adopted some habits and activities to do on weekends, such as going out on adventures, cycling, running and so on)
This occurs especially during the first few months of your job once you get satisfied (but later you might find some alternatives to do like I did)… When you are in love with your job, you begin to dislike weekends, and you wish if you could work on Weekends, because simply you are bored of Weekends, having nothing to do, or even if you do have things to do, you would prefer your office work more than them.. 😉 And it gets worst, if you have nothing planned to do on your Weekends, you are going to be bored to death and you will be wishing to get back to work as soon as possible.

Nine to Five routine ? Screw that ! I want more…

Like I mentioned earlier, you are gonna get hungry for your work, you just don’t want the day to end, and specially while your friends are waiting for 5PM to get out of office, you wouldn’t even care about the time. You would simply want to keep on working and you wouldn’t even notice the time moving. And yes this phenomena, I still go through it almost every single day… 😛

You wake up with so much of Energy and Motivation!

Every single morning you will be waking up with so much of Energy and Motivation to go to work, and not only related to work, but also other aspects of your life. You will be pumped up, ready to get back to work every morning when you wake up. You would be ready to go through any challenge at work, and in fact you’ll be on fire at the moment you start working in the morning. With that mentality you get an extra push to set your mind to overcome any challenge or difficulty of your life.

You feel Fulfilled, Happy about Yourself and your Life…

You begin to feel fulfilled about your Life as well as Yourself as a whole, whereas in almost every aspect of your life you begin to feel complete and calm. That feeling of fulfillment and happiness is something truly amazing and very hard to come by for anyone. 😀 We all want to feel fulfilled, about ourselves, and being able to satisfy with your job, plays a huge role in that pursuit. Happiness is something that we all seek for, and let me tell you, when you are satisfied with your Job, you feel an immense amount of happiness throughout your day, whereas Happiness comes as a part of the fulfillment. 😉 You become more optimistic towards life and everything that you go through in your daily life.

You make everyone Happy around you…

With that energy, motivation, fulfillment and happiness comes another benefit, where you begin to make everyone around you Happy ! 🙂 As you become more positive towards every aspect of your life, you begin to direct the same mindset for people around you, your parents, life partner, family, friends and so on. You are always calm and you could easily tolerate anyone around you. You become more positive and cheerful when it comes to dealing with your loved ones so in return you end up making them happy…

Your Efficiency, skyrocketing at work…

One of the best results of being truly satisfied with your job, is that you become more efficient at your workplace, whatever the work you are given, or however challenging it is, you become insanely efficient in it. That very sense of motivation , fulfillment, and happiness become the key ingredients for this amazing force. As you begin to love your work, your efficiency may sky rocket in ways that you won’t even believe. Whatever the work you have given, you would be able to finish it off way better, way quicker in ways you wouldn’t have even thought of before. Your brain gets super focused during your work, that everything becomes so easy to you, that you could easily figure out anything, given any challenge and finish off your work even before the deadlines. Not only that, the quality of your work will begin to improve unbelievably. You will be very much confident in everything you engage with your office work, because you would be doing it with passion for the joy of the job you’re doing. 😉
This effect, I have experienced very well with my work as for the last few months, I have been noticing myself being able to finish almost all the tasks way before deadlines and getting way better at the approach of the work after each and every task. 🙂 Likewise overtime you get insanely efficient with your work, when you are truly satisfied with your job… 😀

…beginning to push through your limits beyond the impossibilities !

Along with all the above incredible side-effects of being in Love with your job, you get an extra super power to push forward through your limits, beyond your own impossibilities… expanding yourself into new horizons of success. 😉 Yep that statement may seem to be a little exaggerated, but yes it is kind of true, with proof of my own experience. You begin to explore more knowledge by yourself, and expand your potential. Personally last few months I was able to easily learn so many new things knowledge related to my career which I thought I never would. 😉
You automatically adopt the ability to learn anything easy without any stress, and rapidly absorb more knowledge and experience by yourself. Therefore your job satisfaction plays a huge role in pushing you forward through life and expanding your possibilities…

Now now…

Now I know the above facts/behaviors/effects/ are based on my own experience and could be easily differ from one person to another, depending on their own perspective, whereas one might have their own different ways of being satisfied with their job, with different experience. But overall I suppose most of these facts or experience are common for those who are actually satisfied or fallen in love with your jobs… 🙂

In Conclusion…

Well to simply put it, as a great man once said…

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It is hard to find a job that you would love or even like it up to some extent, but if you are determined enough, it is not that that hard to find, as it all comes down to our own determination and not giving up on our dreams. 😉

Once you find it, become truly satisfied and you begin to love your job… Your life would begin to change in so many amazing ways that haven’t even thought of before… 😉

Cheers everyone ! Wishing you all Success ! 🙂

Stay Awesome ! 😀

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All Images are fetched via Google Search, 2015

Winning a Special Award at ICTA e-Swabhimani Competition 2014

Oh yeah ! xD One of the most awesome moments in my entire life was when they announced… 😀

“ICTA e-Swabhimani competition’s e-Entertainment and Games section SPECIAL AWARD goes to Sri Lankan Newspaper Cartoons project by Udara Alwis ! “

OMG ! 😀 that moment of unexpectancy, thinking that I would have no chance among the big companies I competed with during the competition…

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WOHOOOOOOOOO ! 😀 Thank you very much Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) and yes it was truly a wonderful event ! 😀

And this was me presenting on my project ‘Sri Lankan Newspaper Cartoons‘ in front of all the judges and competing Corporate giants… as a Finalist at ICTA e-Swabhimani Competition 2014 ! 😀

Link to Sri Lankan Newspaper Cartoons project –
http://lkpapercartoons.confuzed-sourcecode.com/

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You can Check out the Official Fan page of the Project here –
https://www.facebook.com/SriLankanNewspaperCartoonsProject

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Some Moments to Share…

Receiving the Special Award at ICTA e-Swabhimani all island competition for my Sri Lankan Newspaper Cartoons project ! 🙂

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That moment when you make your own Mother proud… :’)  !  Oh yeah so much of Amma points 😛

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Among the Winners at ICTA e-Swabhimani all island Competition… 🙂

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Sometimes you just gotta believe in yourself and follow your Dreams by yourself… despite of what everyone else tells you…
And someday you will end up there among the giants… 😉

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Some Blog posts regarding my project, Sri Lankan Newspaper Cartoons,

https://theconfuzedsourcecode.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/sri-lanka-newspaper-cartoons-gallery/

https://theconfuzedsourcecode.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/sri-lankan-cartoons/

https://theconfuzedsourcecode.wordpress.com/2014/11/03/welcome-to-confuzed-sourcecode-tech-innovations/

#SriLankanNewspaperCartoons   #SriLanka  #Newspaper   #Cartoon   #NewspaperCartoons  #ICTA

After the Graduation Ceremony… ^_^

Yeeeeei ! 😀 Graduated as a BEng(Hons) Software Engineering with a blast on the stage ! 😉

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that moment when they called “W.U.A. Alwis”, the next thing I know, I jumped on to the stage shouting out and while leaving the stage shouted out saying to the whole audience “Amma, I’m a Graduate !” (Mom, I’m a Graduate !) One of the best moments of my entire life… 😀

Oh well everyone was acting like robots and walking across the stage 😛 So I thought of doing something truly Human and Fun, most of all it was my moment to cherish ! 😀 hehe xD

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Very well it has been an extraordinary, amazing and epic journey throughout last 4 years at APIIT Sri Lanka ! Specially my Mother who believed in me since the beginning, when I told her I needed to achieve my dream without wasting time going around like everyone else.. and my Father who supported me from the fullest in everything ! Thank you ❤ !

I honestly had the best time of my life back at APIIT, with all the crazy fun and incredible hard work… I would say I rebranded myself there.. 😀 It was a place where I was pushed to realize nothing was impossible, and recognize my hidden strengths and move forwards… Also I was truly lucky to have such an epic bunch of friends ! I really love you guys and will surely miss yol 😀 !

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Finally but not least I would like to Thank all the Lecturers who guided us all the way to achieve this amazing achievement.. Thank you all ! 😀

Oh yeeeeeeeeeee xD Lalalaaaaaaaa 😀 ^_^

Just a moment before the Graduation…. ;)

And the day is finally here, officially

Graduating in BENG(Hons) Software Engineering (Second Class First Division) ! xD

Reminds me of the very humble beginning of this dream, when I decided to drop off from my A/Ls Mathematics stream after 6 months of time waste…

When I decided to chase my dream, my passion for technology and innovation, that desperate need of achieving my goal…

Whereas most of my school friends got rid of me thinking that I’m a loser to skip the time waste of A/Ls and jump start my Undergraduate studies, even though they didn’t even know the meaning of what a “Degree” was back then ! 😛 (Seriously everyone thought, I was doing a computer diploma even though I tried to explain that I’m studying for a degree lol) When they were going for Tuition classes I was going for undergraduate Lectures, which I still remember most of them ignored me even in the buses ! 😀 lol

Well after all the hard work and incredible journey of over 3 years end, while my old school friends are still doing CIMA, SIM and all the typical lame courses you do when you waste your life with A/Ls, and trying to find their way… here I am,

Right after my final exams, I got recruited as

a Software Engineer by one of the top IT companies in Sri Lanka just by the age of 21, earning piles of money each month since then, and living my Dream to the fullest ! ^_^

Never underestimate the power of a passionate crazy Dreamer ! 😉

YES I DID IT ! 😀

During The Final Year Project… The Reality from my Undergrad Eye…

The Final Year Project, for those who are undergraduates may know what am I talking about as for others, just wait till you get into a University, which is one of the most important pin points of an Undergrad Life. Some call it, “Thesis”, “Final Project”, “Final Research Project”, and so on, but nevertheless it is the Project that every single Undergrad is suppose to complete in order to graduate at their Final year of the Degree Program. I’m writing this based on my personal experience during I was an undergraduate at APIIT studying for my Software Engineering degree at Staffordshire University. Most of the people do not talk about publicly about this period of Life, moreover no one is bothered or everyone expects others to experience by themselves. But I thought of giving a little glimpse of it for all the curious young minds out there… 😉 I think it would be much better for a fresher to be aware of this huge storm they are gonna face someday ahead the years.

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The Heat…

It all begins at the beginning of the final semester of the final year, even though traditionally at APIIT, we have to start working on it according to a schedule from the first semester of the final year, well well  but everyone waits till the last moment to heat up themselves 😛 ! My fellow colleagues would definitely know about what am talking about 😉 lol Anyhow the heat increases, with the less time left, final assignment projects, final exams and so on, and added to that your supervisors and assessors of the project haunting you xD ! I still remember how we used to hide ourselves whenever we saw our supervisor or assessor.. Oh man, Good memories ! 😀 And also in the middle of all that, your parents and friends asking you about the project and and mentioning the fact that you are at the end of your degree you have to make them proud and all that talks ! -_-

The Stress…

The stress basically starts up with the heat which arises with the beginning of the final semester, which is caused by the facts, the biggest pin point of your degree life, the final project which everything depends on even your Honors class (1st Class, 2nd Class, so on) of the degree, speaking of which the FYP (Final Year Project) directly impacts on your final grade of the degree. Does not matter whether you have been a brilliant student through out your undergraduate life, if you screw this up even slightly, all that would be useless. This is the moment all your parents, cousins, friends, and neighbors are waiting to see the results of, which indeed is a killer stress having to imagine all those people around you staring at your final outcome. Specially the parents of yours who has spent a huge amount of money on your studies if you are an undergraduate of a private university.

The competition of course among the fellow batch mates, which is something always goes behind the back of everyone, in fact a known bitter truth no one likes to talk about. Among all that the fact that you have to deal with your final assignments, projects and exams, OMG talk about STRESS ! Imagine, having to study and work for your projects and exams while having to finish and entire research by your own and compile a full professional level undergraduate thesis by your own, YES ! that is what am talking about ! With in that very few months, you have to manage all that. This is a huge disadvantage for every single student, but which will eventually give a good experience for the student.
Even if you work hard, what if the final out come of the project does not suffice the objectives of your project ? Oh boy thinking that was one of the huge stresses I ever had personally. The stress is all those above added up together, like a frigging thunderstorm roaming around you, a huge rock on top of your head. Trust me this stress is the biggest an undergraduate would ever go through in his life.

Your Parents.. Responsibility.. Money…

The responsibility of the amount of money your parents have spent on you, whereas for us, having to be studying at private University where our parents had to pay from millions for our studies as payments. The funny thing is even though they have spent such a huge amount of money, we still can not guarantee proper grades, because does not matter how much you have paid it all depends on all your hard work as a student.
And the worst is that being in a private university which has a very strict line of academical rules and standards for course work for students, OMG, the pressure is even more higher. Knowing that even the slightest thing could screw up the whole degree which would waste all your parents money, would literally begin to give a heart attack every single time.

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Well that is of course if you care about the money your parents have spent on you and if you really wanna succeed in life with a good degree. This comes as a true motivation at times, well for me it was more of a motivation rather than a stress which is of course was a bit of a stress. Knowing that you somehow have to make your parents proud and prove them that they have not wasted their hard earned money on you, yes it comes from the bottom of the heart and when they see you working so hard to make them proud, nothing else would make them proud even if you loose. Some parents puts their whole life in jeopardy just to send you to a good university and lead you to a better life, specially in those cases the stress on the student is too damn high, and it is their responsibility no matter what…

Doing Something out of the Box ? Good Luck Son !

So I heard that you are hoping to do something out of the box yeah ? Oh well Boy, Good Luck ! I don’t about other Universities, but as in at where I studied doing something totally new and creative or totally out of the box for Your Final year Project, is like literally hanging your self. lol ! Its gonna be a huge risk that you would be taking, but it would all be totally worth it at the end IF you succeed ! but if you mess it up or if you are unable to fulfill the objectives you have defined at the beginning, oh well everything would go down the drain no matter how well you have done so far, what kind of a good research you have done. This would actually kill you when you are in the middle of all the stress, knowing that you are literally putting your neck out there for this new creative idea you wanna do for your project. And also when you tell people about it, (if you are an ordinary student) everyone would go like, Are you crazy ? You wouldn’t be able to finish it on time ? Is that even possible to do ? -_- and all that shit. Well if you are a well known talented student, they would go like, Oh WOW ! Thats awesome ! but isn’t that a lil risky ? 😛 lol either way all these outer environment would freak you out. And knowing the fact that You are on your own, oh boy, the pressure !

Sometimes this drives you crazy while you are going through all the final assignments and exams and crap -_- Yes I have been there. I still recall my Supervisor used to tell me, do you think you would have enough time to finish this up with the limited time and all these work you have got ? And every single time I heard that, it literally freaked me out, BUT I never gave up on my self, I knew my skill set and how i should achieve it using them and moreover I had a huge passion for the idea I had for my Project, which literally drew me to success. So hopefully I never had any doubts. This usually happens if your supervisor or assessor does not know you much as a student, even in my case he used to doubt me all the time, asking me whether I was able to do the work, asking me to show him the work I have done already every single time and so on. But do not get put down yourself, keep on working from your best and prove them wrong. 😉
Starting off is a huge problem whereas when you dont know where or how to start off prolly because no one has done that before, but do not worry, start somewhere and keep on researching. At the end of the tunnel you may find a light..

A Reason to be Proud..

If you think about it, in one way it is a reason to be proud of your self, when everyone else in your batch is doing some obvious random useless crap which has already been done before by the past seniors, YOU in the other hand is doing something EPIC ! something no one has ever done before. Trust me son, this factor will keep you on top of the world ! Even telling people that you are in to such a huge risk, such an innovative creation.. BOOM ! You would know the feeling..
Being different always feels good (well at least for my personally), but do not let it totally blind you with it. Keep an open mind, think of every single circumstances, always remind yourself of the risk that you are taking and be alerted.
If you are going through this, just know, You are taking a huge risk, but DO NOT GIVE UP and NEVER STOP BELIEVING ! NEVER LOSE YOUR PASSION ! no matter what they say or whatever happens. Just work hard ! work your *ss off ! 🙂 You will see a miracle at the end…

Your Friends and The Competition…

This is some kind of a dirty truth which no one would like to talk about. This is a moment where you get to choose between friendship and your personal success. But just because that you don’t have to be a total di**. Even though this is evaluated individually, there is still a competition going on between everyone in the batch, because at the end of the day everyone is trying to achieve the best GPA and get a good class from the degree, specially given the fact that 1st classes are given for only the best few.
Sometimes a good friend of yours would refuse to help you out with your project if they are jealous of you and they would probably ignore you. Be alerted, this happens with most of your so called friends 😉 or else they would lead you to a wrong path just to mess you up.. So be careful son !

Along with this some people decide to completely put down their friends in every single way possible, out of jealousy and out of being scared of other’s success. Which is really pathetic but some losers can not help themselves. lol 😛 Most of the time they would condemn your Project Idea, make fun of it in front of everyone else, discourage you saying that you can not do it, you wouldn’t finish it and so on such lame drama.. lol
Therefore make sure to stay away from such losers specially during your final year project and always surround your self with a supportive crowd of true friends.

You honestly don’t want to.. but you have no Choice…

During your Project days, with all the given stress and workload, you get extremely busy and sometimes unfortunately your friend comes up to you and ask for help with their project when they know you are good at it. But so sadly you are also extremely stuck and messed up with your own project in a totally different way which you can’t even figure out, at times like these you have to make a choice and like it or not you prolly would have to give priority for your own project having to turn down your friend who is in need… This is totally fair unless you are doing it out of your selfishness and competition.
I have personally faced so many situations like these during my project days. So what I did was trying to explain how I’m stuck with my one and how much more I have to finish in my, being politely said that its their responsibility be fair and understand the situation and approach someone else for help.
I had this one friend who was a girl, she asked me for some help with her project, and I said alright fine, I ll try my best but I’m also honestly messed up with mine. But later I forgot to get back to her with the help because I was really stressed and stuck with mine. Because of it until this day she does not speak with me. Funny enough she is the only one who acted like this when everyone else understood. So these kind of cases would be there once out of 10 times 😉
Well given the obvious reasons, its their responsibility to understand. It is a two way path actually you should be honest and give the fair reasons and they should understand the given circumstances. If they don’t cannot help it, this is about your future man !

No Sleep, No Appetite,  No Food,  No Mood !

This is some of the worst side effects you would face when you are going through your final year project, specially when there is only one or two weeks left for the submission. You literally do not feel like sleeping at all, you stay up all night long due to the stress, but for some people its the total opposite, they fell asleep even more often and sleep pretty well. lol 😛 Well after we humans are different from each other in nature. You get no appetite for food and you could stay without food even throughout a whole day.
Being moody is very common these days which comes obviously with the stress that you go through. This would be very annoying for your family members and specially your other friends, not to mention, obviously for your gf or bf. Well after all its their responsibility to understand the situation and deal with it.

I recall being up all night long coding on my project and coming to APIIT in the next day morning, being all moody and sleepy lol 😛 And I used to act very lazy and mean with everyone, looking all pale and sleepy.. oh oh and having my hair totally messed up, having a long beard looking like a cave man 😀 lol Everyone used to be like omg what has happened to you ? why are you acting like this and so on.. 😛 hikz xD Oh Yeah ! Good memories ! 😀
This actually drives you even more and sometimes it makes you even more harder knowing the fact that you should finish this off soon and get rid of this whole suffering.
So be prepared child !

being Extra Respectful and Scared for Lecturers and Admins.. lol

Being an undergrad for about 3 or 4 years you prolly have a clear idea whats the drill with interacting with Lecturers and the Academic Administration, knowing that they could screw you up from top to bottom if you mess with them. This is gets extremely cautions during the final year project time period. If you mess with a lecturer they could bring down your whole final year project results and like it or not, true or false, we all know this has already happened before for our seniors. Due to this reason you start paying extra respect for lecturers and being scared of them over the limit. 😛
And then the Admins, where when were at APIIT we had a very rude, unnecessary strict administration which we were really scared of thinking they would mess up our results or exams 😛 so we were acting like innocent mouses in front of them. lol 😀 Its actually an obvious reacting that comes from every single Final Year student knowing that you are going through the very final step and you have to be cool with everyone without making any issues which you know would bite you in the back 😛 !

The Insanity and Nonsense Blast !

So getting back to the stress, this one of the EPIC-EST outcomes of it in mostly every single student ! You may see some of your batch mates even your own self going completely insane due to the stress, where as start playing around nonsense even in the middle of all the hectic serious workload, randomly shouting out loud in the middle the class or the lab, running around, hurraaaying even for the tiniest thing, dancing in the middle of the lab and so on, oh yeah the list goes on… xD Specially I’m personally a lot experienced regarding this, where as I was one of those victims who had such side effects to the extreme level. Even today if you talk to any of my colleagues, they would tell you xD  😛
Oh yeah, so much of epic memories with that… 😉 and be warned child, your time is ahead of you ! 😛

So…

So this is some of the reality experience I had during my Final year Project when I was an undergraduate at University. Well of course this is totally based on my own personal experience at APIIT Sri Lanka, if you are a student from other University it would be different, but in common these facts are true for most of the undergrads. I’m just leaving these experiences in my blog for you guys out there, just to mark some of the unforgettable experience I had at my University days, hoping you would be able to gain something from them and add more of you own to it.
Well as now I am a graduate and working for some big a** corporate company I would never get the chance to go back to those amazing days, and someday you will also get to this point in your life, and make sure you wouldn’t regret the time you spent during the Final Year Project, the last few weeks at your University.
So get the maximum of it, help out your friends in possible ways without being selfish all the time, do not mess with the lecturers 😛 , take some risk, do something different for your final thesis, work yours a**es off, and play some random nonsense just to have fun and get rid of stress 😉 making some good memories ! 😀
Behold the Secret Recipe ! 😉

Good Luck for all you folks out there ! 😀 Have an EPIC time !

(Image Sources – Google, 2014)

She said, Cut it Son ! You will feel much Better !

Cut it son ! Believe me you will feel so much better !
Aneee no amma (mom) I can’t ! 😦
CUT IT SHORT ! OR I WILL BEAT YOU !
OMG ! ok ok fine ! -_-

That was a small conversation I had with my mom often once in a month when i was a kid. Let me get back to that later. Last week I went to get a hair cut as my hair has grown too much and it has started to irritate me ! So I had the hair cut and went home, had a bath and laid on my bed under the ceiling fan. OMG ! Such a feeling 😀 ! lol It felt so much comfortable cutting that long hair, such a comfortable feeling on top of my head, as if the a huge rock I was holding on my head was taken off or something 😛 . This got me thinking…

When I was a kid, mom used to take me to the barber to cut my hair once a month, which was one of the most hated things in my life those days as a kid. It was almost like cutting my head off and mom used to tell the barber to cut my hair so short to the millimeter, so she would be able to get rid of the headache of taking me to the barber sooner. 😛

Every single time she took me to barber we used to have the above Dialog conversation which I have mentioned in the beginning ! xD Back then I never realized what it meant, given the fact that I hated cutting my hair, I thought she was lying just to make me cut it and it was so annoying. Where as there was thought in my head those days, the more you grow your hair the more cool you were back in school among other kids. 😛

But what do you know, now I realize that she was Right ! It does feel much better cut the hair after its been grown. If you think of it scientifically, We live in Sri Lanka a third world country where we get 360 days of burning sun light being situated near the equator, and most of all considering the dusty dirty roads. Not to include the way we travel by buses and walking on those roads under the heavy sunlight its no wonder we sweat and our heads get dirty, as for when it comes to long hair it gets dirty and sweaty easily. It gets so irritating at nights when it starts scratch after going home even if you have a bath, but then worst case what if you don’t get to have a bath ? OMG, disaster ! lol

Therefore its always better to cut the hair and keep it considerably short whenever possible rather than going for a long hair for a long time. Unless you are kid of a millionaire father where you would get transport in front of your feet, staying in the AC rooms whole day, having someone to carry an umbrella behind you, and blah blah… lol

So Thank you mom ! for making me realize ! 😀

lol 😉

 

PS – Something I wrote being bored at Office ! xD