About Aravind Iyer

Hi, I am Aravind. I am a scientist and computer engineer by training. My latest professional assignment was at Samsung where we designed a communications protocol and framework to enable the smartphone, smart watch, televisions and other accessories to talk to each other. Prior to that I was at General Motors where I worked on Vehicle-to-vehicle communications and security protocols for authentic message exchange in a broadcast setting. Before that I was a graduate student at Purdue university where I completed my PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

About my sabbatical

In July 2016, I quit my job at Samsung to take a sabbatical. Although I was doing quite well at work, the work itself had come to dominate my life. I seemed to be deriving meaning only from my work, and it felt like I was but a spectator in all other dimensions of my life. I took the sabbatical with an open mind and a broad plan to do running, writing, drumming and learning. It has been a deeply stimulating experience ranging from doubt and despair over what I am doing to a sense of euphoria to realise the many, limitless dimensions to life. As I come to wind up my sabbatical, I feel it is going to take some years before I can realise its full impact and benefit. Having said that, the genesis of this website is very much in my sabbatical. While at first, it is an attempt to put together what I have done during my sabbatical, I intend to continue adding to it and I hope to see it sustain.

About this site

One may say the days of making a personal website have come and then gone. Now, it is almost an anachronism to have a personal website. It certainly wasn’t like that the first time I made a personal website, hosted on my college server. As an undergraduate at IIT Bombay, I built and maintained my webpage for about a year from June 2001 to June 2002. Here is a screenshot.

Screenshot of Aravind's old website from 2001-2002
The quaint personal website I made in 2001-2002

I made another attempt at a personal website, again hosted on my graduate school server, while I was at Purdue. This time I ran it from around January 2003 until December 2006, and even had it HTML4 compliant! Here is a screenshot.

Screenshot of Aravind's old website from May 2006
My personal website around May 2006

It was quite a thing to make and maintain personal websites and blogs. In fact, I had an RSS feed full of lots of different people who used to blog with varying frequency and quality. Over time that has changed. The only blogs and websites that have survived are those that have found a focussed speciality and garnered viewership around that. Social media profiles take care of the rest of our needs to be seen and heard, socially and professionally.

Despite all this, I feel I need a place to organise my writing and showcase any other work I might do. I have written at Medium and also on LinkedIn, and I intend to continue doing so. But I like my own little corner. Have fun reading, and if you find something you like, please let me know! Cheers!

Tech

This site is built using the following tech:

  1. Jekyll - for generating the static pages of the site
  2. Minimal Mistakes - the Jekyll theme for styling my site
  3. Github - for version control
  4. Netlify - for web hosting and continuous deployment from Github
  5. Soundsgood - for embedding cross-platform music playlists
  6. Staticman - for comments on a static site
  7. Atom - for file editing
  8. Netlify CMS - for in-browser editing

Contact

If you have a question, comment or suggestion, please send me a message or write to me. The best way to reach me is to email me. I know it’s old school, but I would really appreciate it if you would write in, if you had something to say.

If you would like to follow me on social media, please use the links from the sidebar on the left or click the follow button at the top to display the links.