Home > General, Programming > So what will you do by going back to India?

So what will you do by going back to India?

I’ve been asked this question several times, when I talk to people here (in US). Which is a very valid question – you can do a lot of things here which are not even possible in India (even to this date), even the school education is good here, contrary to what I heard when I was in India. Plus, if one has to work on enterprise-y projects (Java, C# etc.) why not earn in USD rather than in INR?

And to be frank, I didn’t know the answer to it (some time back) so I just used to say – I don’t know. However, the answer(s) have appeared to me over the past year or so –

1) I wouldn’t want to work for any of the outsourcing majors (HXL, TXS, CXS etc.) šŸ˜‰
2) I would not like to work on Windows (so obviously no C# or .Net), I don’t even want to use Windows (for anything, least of all software development, hence my next machine is going to be a Linux)
3) I definitely want to work on another platform now (be it Linux or Android)
4) I definitely don’t want to write desktop or web applications (no matter using Java, RoR or Asp.Net MVC)

So by now it’s amply clear that no big company is fit for me. On top of that I have a location constraint – I can only work in Pune. So where does that leave me?

1) Work for one of the start-ups – Paisa, Infinitely Beta or Hover (the first two use Clojure, the last one uses Erlang)
2) Start my own start-up šŸ™‚
3) Heavy self learning
4) Do nothing (not a real option)

Out of the above three (since #4 is not a real option), #1 is not possible at this moment (or anytime soon) because I know neither Clojure, nor Erlang and #2 is not easy – one has to be smart enough to create something new or of value to others, and again, at this moment this looks less likely.

Hence, the only option left for me is #3 šŸ™‚ Yes, that’s what I can do and that’s what I’ll do. I am planning to take a sabbatical and I seriously plan to learn Clojure (and or Lisp) and maybe Haskell. I also have come to know of lots of good books which I’ll try to master – SICP, On Lisp etc.

I also realized that many of my peers in US, who work as consultants, typically get a month or two off (not as a rule, but most likely) between different assignments / projects during which they can learn a new skill / language. But in India, most of us work as full time employees and we hardly get quality or enough time off to learn such things (which is a big disadvantage). Also a consultant can take six months off (for example) and then start consulting again – it’s quite common here, so why can’t one do the same in India? (No one chooses to do it is a different matter altogether). I also heard (or read some) stories about how a person in US is in a particular field, but goes to a totally different field (for some short period of time, say farming) and then comes back to his original field, and used to fantasize about such opportunities – so that time is soon about to come.

And I’ve been working for almost 11 years now without taking a long break – except a short one (3 months), when I left the VB6 rut to start learning C# (and .Net) and finally get some good projects, money and respect (professionally). So this time I’ll have to take a bigger break, because the target is lofty, and I have to unlearn a lot of things (Windows, Visual Studio, C#, Subversion, RDBMS etc.) and learn a whole lot of new stuff (Linux, Emacs, Clojure, Git, one of the No SQLs).

So India, here I come (in the next 5-6 months, hopefully) šŸ™‚

Categories: General, Programming
  1. parag medsinge
    October 26, 2010 at 6:31 am

    Nice to hear that you are planning to return back in next 5-6 months . Three cheers from my side for selecting third option, kash!!! if I have not overburdened with these bloody bank EMI’s I could have also enjoyed some study leave šŸ™‚ .

    See you soon and happy Diwali in advance ……

    • mmwaikar
      October 26, 2010 at 8:25 am

      I understand buddy, but loans (specially for home) are a necessity too. The same problem (of mortgage and loans) is faced by American guys (like us) – at least we can earn in USD and it becomes easy to pay back in Rs. but Americans don’t have a very real option (other than earning a lot).

      But you know, you have one option – take a month leave and study. And maybe when we join a company, we should negotiate that we’ll work 11 months (instead of the regular 12) – we’ll get a little less pay but at least we’ll have a real chance of improving ourselves every year.

      See you and Happy Diwali to you and your family. Good luck!

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