Geek on the top is all about success stories of Geeks who are working hard to chase their goals and are an inspiration for other geeks.
Anmol Mishra is currently pursuing his Majors in Computer Science from Jaypee Institute of Information Technology. Anmol had worked for Google Summer of Code. For Competitive programming, he feels that seeking for the solution and learning from mistakes is most important. He believes that Life is all about priorities and time management should be one of the highest priorities.
You have cleared Google Summer of Code 2018. How do you feel about it ?
Well, Google Summer of Code is surely a milestone for an undergrad student. I am proud that all my hard work paid off, I am thankful of my friend Aman Sharma for this. I started to work for GSoC in December 2017 during my winter vacation, I have always been a competitive programmer but I felt my learning curve arrived to stagnation, so I started experimenting. First of all, I made a list of all the organizations that were selected from the last 8 years and checked the domains of each. I knew that I did not have enough exposure to deal with it, so I began to work for an organisation which I have most in common with, which allowed me to work more in least time available. After working for around 1-2 weeks I concluded to contribute and rest is destiny. Soon, things started falling into the right place. In my opinion, Google Summer Of Code is more about strategy and time management than just programming. My project revolved around Python. Thanks to Geeksforgeeks (Alma mater for resources in beginning).
How did it all start? What made you land into the world of competitive programming?
I had no background in computer science, I joined this stream due to the enthusiasm and my father’s guidance. When I joined college, I felt suppressed by the books of computer science. My CGPA was 8.3/10. But as semester 1 passed, I realized that I can’t handle my core subjects which were about to start with the semester.
I decided to improve my problem-solving skills and eliminate my fear of programming. Then, Aman told me about GeeksforGeeks and I began a new journey. I have no shame in telling that I solved and saw the basic data structure solution for nearly 2-3 months before jumping to Competitive programming, Whenever I saw the solution it left a trace of knowledge dots in the canvas of mind space which increased with the increasing frequency of questions(this is not practice). Now, I started to practice with competitive programming participation (practice) which lead to the connection of those dots. I hope you get the analogy here, GeeksforGeeks was starting point and when I practiced with CP at different platforms, I never cared about ranking. Well, I believe in myself and I sincerely thank GeeksforGeeks for strengthening my fundamentals which will help me throughout my life. With completion of semester 3, my confidence and skills have started to expand. I have landed into world of competitive programming for practice, improvement of skills and strengthening the fundamentals.
What according to you is the most important skill required for competitive Coding?
For Competitive programming, I feel that seeking for solution and learning from mistakes is most important. I accept that for competitive programming, you need to burn the midnight oil, but that price is worth spending. 😉
I am not a 5 star coder on any reputed platform but I learned Problem solving which is most crucial in this field. No one is going to write Segment tree or KMP algo for a month in their jobs, CP teaches you a skill i.e problem solving.
You have done Summer Internship at IIT Kanpur. How did you grab this opportunity?
I did summer training at IIT-Kanpur for Machine Learning because I am always curious to explore how things work. I am thankful to an IITian friend who shared this with me. I learned a lot during the training. Completion certificate was not even given to everyone who participated in the training. So, I think I did something worthy and exceptional 😉
How did you come to know about GeeksforGeeks? How did it help you?
For me, If I can’t get resources on google, GeeksforGeeks is always there. It’s like an archive which is expanding in every field now. Aman only shared GfG with me. If I can write code fluently then I believe that, GeeksforGeeks is my first mentor(virtual). I may have spent my midnights writing code, GfG was my IDE. Thank you 🙂
What was the turning point of your life because of which you are here?
Meeting with Aman (my batchmate) was the turning point of my life. I have interviewed with HackerRank, HackerEarth and a tech giant (Non-Disclosure Agreement) and all the credit goes to Aman. We did Google summer of Code together, we wrote code together, we fought together and we learned together. There is a term called “Pair Programming in Agile methodology” and I found a pair with Aman. No doubt there were ups and down in my life, but we shared all of it. He was always there to motivate me and share information like Competitive programming, Operating system, etc.. He is Linux geek by heart ( He is champion I believe) and his strong fundamentals motivated me to beat him, alas I can’t. “I am a dust in comparison to others but wind of hard work will make you reach to the greatest heights”
Do you think time management is important in college? How did you do that?
Yes, Time management plays a vital role in college. Life is all about priorities and I think that time management should be one of the highest priorities. I don’t think that I could be more efficient, maybe due to the fact that I was busy growing and watching TV series (oops…). I tried to focus in classes as much as I could, learn and perform the best I could in my exams . And yes, sometimes I felt over exhausted, had anxiety attacks, burnt out feeling. I knew 24 hours aren’t enough so I traded time with my sleep :). I stayed at a PG near my college (5 min to college), everything was time management and decisions I made throughout my life. I had a habit to wake up at 7:10 AM irrespective of the fact what was my sleeping hour last night maybe 12, 2, or 4 etc. The point is I tried to maintain a balance by amending a few daily habits. When others played Counter-Strike (PUBG was not on mobile by then :p) and other things, I had my earphones plugged in and solved questions. Each and every day, Aman was there to motivate me (Thanks man)
What is your one in a million advice to students?
“There is no excuse for success”, It’s a bit cliche but it is the truth :). Surround yourself with good company, work like no one else and if you practice at GeeksforGeeks like you eat, you will shine one day. For Google Summer of Code, feel free to contact, start contributing and keep this loop going.
I would like to thank Geeksforgeeks for letting me share a story, I hope my story was worth your time.
Anmol can be reached at Facebook, LinkedIn, Website
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