May 16, 2009
I never got around to writing about the projects that I did since I have come here. Well here they are:
1. Alternate Spring Break 2009:
I volunteered to work at Cabrini Connections, Chicago. This is a small not for profit organization which helps under privileged children move towards a first career through various activities like after school programs, etc. They are connected to a lot of organizations in various fields like legal services, corporate services, etc. which help them in their endeavors.
I transformed a static conceptual map at their website into a visualization applet. This applet helped new volunteers understand the role of Cabrini Connections plays in helping these kids. This applet can be seen on their site at: www.tutormentorexchange.net (its on the rightmost link on the top named "Village strategy map").
2. I made a computer adaptive security test for my SI630 class. This test can be found here. This test rather than evaluating how secure your computer system is tests hows secure you are in terms of computer security namely your browsing and data storage habits.
The questions that are thrown at the test-taker are based on their responses to prior questions. At the end each user is associated with a score, which tell the user whether he is in the safe zone or the danger zone, along with a couple of recommendations about how to improve.
3. Clustering users based on their queries to the AOL search engine. Yes I had access to thousands of actual user queries from the AOL database. I used JUNG and lucene to perform random walks on this data and then cluster the users based on their similarities in querying. More about this would soon be appearing on my personal blog, where I would be talking about the algorithm I made and how I finally cracked into how to use JUNG :)
Then there were a number of other projects for the management class and the statistics class that I took, one of them was about a regression analysis I did in predicting the market based on a couple of parameters like GDP, dollar index, etc.
May 15, 2009
I am Back !
I know I have not been keeping up my promises of keeping my blog up to date. Well I am here now and here are some of the things I promised to you guys, but before that, since most of you would be already packing stuff to come here, here is some last minute advise to keep in mind:
1. Book your flight tickets early, so there is not some last minute problems. Also clearly understand the baggage requirements, since some airlines are very strict and if you are not careful you might have to leave some of your stuff behind or pay a huge amount of money to the airlines to carry it with you.
2. Try and take a flight which has the least lay-overs, since every-time you stop you have to walk through all the security checks again.
3. Carry all you important documents like VISA, Passport, University issued i20 and offer letter in a folder in your handbag. Checked in baggage gets lost all the time so carry a pair of clothing in your handbag as well.
4. Start looking for an apartment (if you are planning to live off-campus) right now. You can go to various sites like:
Though do not finalize anything until you have a look for yourself.
This is about it, if anything else comes to my mind, then I'll put it in my blog.
All the best hope to see you guys soon.
P.S. Keep in constant touch with your international buddies they are the best sources of information for you.