whihathac's Den

code is poetry

11 things I have learnt in first 3 years of work at Microsoft

I am very lucky to have started my career in one of the best companies in the world – Microsoft. And as expected I have learnt a lot from it in past three years of working here. Microsoft has a very unique and distinct work culture, with a lot of great folks to learn from and look upon.

I am going to list down and share few things that I have learnt at Microsoft. I am hopeful this would help those who have just joined the IT industry or are going to join it in near future.

1. I love Microsoft

Loyalty - I believe this is the first and foremost belief on which you must build the foundation of your career. And this is what the company expects the least out of you. After all, they are the one who are paying you. Surely, you can avoid evangelizing the products your company makes – but think for a second, if you being an employee don’t like/buy/use the product, do you think anyone else will?

Bonus Tip: You *should* not use company resources for your personal use. Also, being a appropriator won’t serve you in the long run.

2. Stand and Deliver

If you deliver what you committed, you are achieved and deserved your Salary. The terms “committed”, “achieved” are probably specific to Microsoft, but I think there is similar terms and rationale used everywhere else. And if you fail to keep your promise, its clear you are “underachieved”.

I feel this is the most important learning I have got at Microsoft. We are not used to think like this. Isn’t it?

3.  Find your “Sachin Tendulkar” at work

You need to find someone at work whom you idolize. Build relationships, make him/her as mentor and try to learn maximum from them. Role models will help you focus and channelize your energies in one direction – your goal. Read the next one which completes this point.

4. Trust the right people

Its really difficult to do this right the first time. You are an new entrant to a unknown group of people. You faced this situation earlier when you were a fresher in your first year of college. But you had lot of time to make mistake and improve on it. Trusting wrong people, and looking up to them as role model will influence you in a wrong way. My advice, be cautious and take the advices with a pinch of salt.

5. “I hate politicians”

Stay away from Office gossips and politics. They are breeding ground for killing your creativity and loyalty. We all are/will be subjected to politics at some point of time. And its better to ignore than react to them. Believe me, you’ll get into these sort of situations now and then. Its very crucial to be cognizant and not take sides and try to leave the discussions apologizing and without hurting anyone’s sentiments.

6. Differentiating crows from crows

It’s important to listen to the feedback – good or bad. But its as important to disregard the "Ad Hominem" feedback. This kind of feedback is just blatant negative without soul and thought. These is the kind of feedback that will make you think, "Am I like this?”, “Did I do that?”. Instead of ignoring it, it’s always great to have a candid talk with the person sharing you this feedback about if this is something that he/she noticed couple of times and seek for help and guidance.

Bonus Tip: Always share constructive feedback – one that they can use it to improve. The tone of the feedback determines if you want to help him/her or point out their faults.

7. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall!

I think its more important to fall than to succeed. You learn a lot while falling (oops), fallen (sigh), trying to stand (urge) and standing to the challenge again (I can do it!). Also don’t spend time and energy explaining or reasoning out why you failed. Instead use this as an experience to avoid such mistakes in future.

8. Bad Appraisal

It’s no use crying over spilt milk. Get over it, act on your next steps. Based on my discussion with number of colleagues – peers, manager and organization leaders, they never recollect about their ratings/rankings. Not saying that you shouldn’t care about it. But what’s gone for the past year, cannot be changed. This ranking made them more determined to prove a point. Hence don’t let the rankings/ratings which I refer as “Moh Maya” bring you down. Focus on the next point instead!

9. Goal!

Identify your life goals. Stay focused and channelize all the efforts towards this one or two things you want to achieve in your lifetime. Also I find that it’s good idea to experiment when you have nothing to lose at the start of your career. Always weigh and see what you are sacrificing to achieve it and then decide its real worth.

10. Date with my GF v/s Work

Don’t try to mix personal and professional life. Keep your Work-Life-Balance healthy and do give the time your loved ones deserve. You’ll get lot of opportunities at work to become successful, but one miss at personal life, you’ll never get it back.

11. Extras

If you have reached this point, you are not bored and find some value in my post. So I think you deserve to know more from my experience. Which is why I am sharing the following tips I think are noteworthy, specific to –>

Company:

  • Know Your Company – Don’t they do a background verification on you when they hire you? On a serious note, try to know what your company does to earn the moolah, promoters or shareholders, its CSR initiatives, stock price, impact to the world – the more you know your company, more you’ll be attached to it.
  • Help your company products to improve by sharing the feedback, finding bugs and doing usability tests.

Team:

  • Its as critical to blend into the team as to stand out. Remember, you are a team member first!
  • Try to make your team successful, you’ll eventually become successful.
  • Respect the various cultural background of the team members and give enough space for your team partner to feel comfortable.

Personal:

  • Be independent and have an identity of yourself. You’ll be in a lurch, if the person (could be your manager) you are dependent on to speak for you, leaves the company.
  • Help all the people you can. When you fall down, you’ll have lot of hands to pull you back.
  • Talk less, Do more. Take initiatives to change the things you don’t like or that can be improved.
  • Read lot of books – non-fictional, management. It will help shape your outlook and attitude. Also don’t shy from reading self-help books.
  • Don’t judge or build perception. Instead try to know and reason out the situation to which he/she was subjected to.
  • Lastly you should follow your dreams. Don’t lose them. I mean literally too –> don’t lose your sleep over work! Work comes as soon as you finish it!!!

 

Hope it helps! It was an immense pleasure to share it with you all. :)

Do share your own experiences and feedback!

Regards,
Bhavik

PhotoResizer 0.5.1.0 (mini Release)

Hi All,

Going very slow on the development of PhotoResizer, here is a very small release. Actually it has no new features. But now onwards, you don’t need to install PhotoResizer. Its now freely distributable as an standalone EXE. :) – a request that has been pending since long time. The EXE is around 350 KB in size and requires .NET Framework 2.0 to run.

Hope to hear more comments/feedback/feature requests in near future.

Links:
PhotoResizer homepage

Regards,
Bhavik Vora.

New Version of PhotoResizer Coming soon :)

Hi,

For the last week, I have been tweaking the (old) release of PhotoResizer to include more features and remove bugs. I have released the version to few of my close friends, and based on their feedback, will release it here on the website. (Well if you are genuinely interested in beta testing the app before I release here, please send me an email :)).

Some of the features in the yet-to-be-released version are:

- Drag and Drop image fieles for selection
- Improved performance (multithreaded to give you better response)
- Bug Fixed: File resizing by pixels
- Setup for PhotoResizer

Haven't included many features, but the features included here were essential.

Hope this version is much stable and proves useful. Keep watching this space for more info.

PS. Previous release are here: http://blog.bhavikvora.com/page/PhotoResizer-Release.aspx
Its pretty old release and I'll recommend you wait till this weekend for the upcoming release.

Thanks,

Bhavik Vora

Microsoft Rocks, as usual :)

Its been more than 4 weeks now that I am working here at Microsoft IT, India in the Hyderabad campus. I cant deny the fun that we have here everyday. Each day is a new learning experience for me with respect to the functioning of Microsoft, its values and the commitments it has towards its customers. I am deeply moved by the stress that Microsoft puts on the customer satisfaction. Apart from work, the workplace is marvelous and has all sorts of games (XBOX, Cricket ground, Football, Table Tennis, Pool, etc) to keep you away from home ;) . Well the silly part - I miss my family and friends. I'll keep you all updated about everything here on my blog site - http://blog.bhavikvora.com

Regards,

Bhavik Vora

(batch) PhotoResizer Release

Hi,

I am releasing PhotoResizer. The application is a small utility that helps in (batch) resizing of Photos (Jpeg images).

Latest Version: 0.2.0.1 (dont mind the numbers :P)

Change since Last Revision: Click Here

Pre - Requisites:
.NET Framework 2.0

Features:
Select Bulk Images to resize
Resize Image by Pixels or %age
Control Quality of resized Images
Zip the resized Images
Conversion and resizing of bmp and png resizing to jpg
Save and review Log

Known Issues
The Application hangs when it has more than 50 photos (for 512MB RAM). Please make sure you batch the photos. I am working around this issue. If any1 can help me with this, contact me asap. :)

Procedure:
1) If you have any previous versions of PhotoResizer, please uninstall it first with help of Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel.
2) Download the Setup Archive (.zip) from here - PhotoResizer 0.2.0.1.zip (333.10 kb).
3) Extract the files using utility such as WinRar or WinZip.
4) Run the Setup.exe from the folder
5) Start the application from Start-> Programs-> PhotoResizer->PhotoResizer

Terms of Use:
This software is not to be resold. Use the software at your own risk. Please make backup of the images the application will process. I am not responsible for any loss of work or time or pics ;) Please don't use the software in a business environment which has risks of losing critical data.

Screenshot:

For feature requests or reporting bugs, you can mail me at - contactme@bhavikvora.com

Also I need your comments and feedback to understand your needs. I have given just over 5 hours of my time in between the exams (I just love to do it ;)). I hope the software comes into good use as it did for me. There are few kinks in the software, and I am trying to put things in place.

I'll be developing a project page soon for PhotoResizer on CodeBox :).

Regards,

Bhavik

PhotoResizer Updates and Revision History

Hi,

This is a post dedicated to keep a tab on the versions/releases. I just hope my CodeBox comes alive ! Its getting difficult to maintain my project :(

Latest PhotoResizer ver: 0.2.0.1
Release Date: 31 January 2008.
Downoad Information: Click Here to go to the respective post.

Revision History: 

Version 0.2.0.1
Release Date: 31 January 2008

Resize Photos by selecting photos, not folder-wise - Thanks SaM for the feature request.
Zip the resized Images - Thanks Karthik for the feature request :)
Conversion and resizing of bmp and png resizing to jpg

Version 0.1.0.4
Release Date: 12 January 2008

There have been issues with the Application trying to open each file as a jpg image and trying to resize it. I overlooked a piece of code, while formatting it. And now i have corrected it. 

Ver 0.1.0.3
Release Date: 10 January 2008

First Release to public download.

Regards,

Bhavik

(Batch) PhotoResizer !

Hi,

Okay, I just start new Projects and halfway leave them. But here's a project which i just thought of a few hours (2 hrs) ago and got it working, ofcourse from some helf from Coding4Fun.

We'd been to Tithal (Valsad), Gujarat last week to celebrate the New Years' eve and we'd a cuppa of pics which were each 3MB big. We'd thought of manualy resize each pic thru Paint/Photoshop but would have been time consuming. (We did have a lot of time, who wud study SE :P). So i just made up a working App of the PhotoResizer. Here is the screen shot:

Features:

  • Seperate input and output folders
  • only Jpg file support
  • Save Logs
  • Resize by Pixels

Still lot of things to put on before release:

  • Resize by %age
  • more file supports
  • Progress Bar
  • JPEG compression

I'll release the app soon for test after i add these minor features ;)

Well dats all from me, I've gotta start SE or else i am screwed on 8th Jan !

Regards,

Bhavik Vora

Laptop coming: January 2008

Hi,

Finally all my wishes have been answered :D. The much needed laptop is coming soon in January '08. I'll just love to bluff its config :P

Its a Dell Vostro 1500, i customised:

Intel Core 2 Duo T7250, 2.0GHz, 800Mhz, 2M L2 Cache
15.4 inch Wide Screen XGA+ LCDTrueLife
2GB, DDR2, 667MHz 2 DIMM
128MB NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS
160GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
Genuine Windows Vista Business
8X DVD+/-RW with double-layer DVD+R write capability
Dell Wireless 1390 802.11g Mini Card
85 WHr 9-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery (7.5 Hours)
Dell Wirless 355 Bluetooth Module (2.0+EDR)
+ 3 yrs Onsite Warranty

All of the above for around Rs. 52k :D

Now this is what I say as show off :P

Regards,

Bhavik Vora

 

Secret Project unveiled

Hi,

This is to formally announce the "secret" project that i wished to do for last couple of weeks. i had thought of this way back when i was trying to develop my CMS, but due to technical website constraints, had to shelve it out. Now that i have enough minimal requirements (except for time constraints Tongue out), following is the announcement of my new project.

"Welcome to the SocioDev Networking. This is a project under development where I aim to create a social network for the developers. Developers are the heart of the IT industry and they have their own ways of working. This place will try to bring in various developers together where in they can share, keep a track of their work, interact with different communities, keep abreast of the latest happenings."

The initial phase of development will yield results bearing close resemblance to a website CMS and will help into my development of my Final Year project. Now you know who will be the 1st testers of my project Laughing. I havent asked any1 to assist me, but i feel working alone will restrict the approach and the imagination.

I am not gonna reveal any of further details, which will just add to the hype surrounding my project. Wink Still you all are free to add/request for features in the project.

Regards,

Bhavik Vora.