I am Hrishikesh Ballal, but that much you must have figured out by the domain? Welcome to my website. I have had this site in one form or the other for the past 16 years or so (wow I am getting old!). Recently I moved to WordPress.com and I am in the process of updating my blog and importing all the older entries into the site.
I am Mechanical Engineer by training specializing in Operations Research and work in the software world. From January 2013, I will be starting a PhD at the Center for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London and with a focus on solving some of the problems around urbanization. I have intermediate level coding skills and after dabbling with a number of languages, I have settled down with Python. I love it, especially coming from a non-Computer Science background. I am in to building products and tools that people use, Product Development is my thing. I love it because it teaches me a lot and I enjoy building something that other people use. It is also incredibly hard thing and one of the reasons I enjoy it so much.
My focus at work and study has always been a mixture of Design and Operations, I work at Microsoft as my day job. I have thoroughly enjoyed the fast paced pressure of Operations work combined with the creativity offered by design especially in the context of Systems Engineering. Additionally, I am very passionate about environmental issues especially with application of advanced technologies to the problem. Not so long ago, I was offered a fellowship to work on solving the collection and end-of-life aspects of e-waste in developing countries and it was the thesis for my degree, I worked on a number of issues around Waste Management and also built a electronic waste profiling survey, it is free to use and we have a small community that supports the site.
I am very fascinated by algorithms and actively working with them was one of my most enjoyable jobs. I am also into technology research and entrepreneurship and this led to the Podcast. In the summer of 2007, I was involved in co-starting .com company with a friend which led to mixed results but the experience was invaluable and it motivated me to start the Podcast and other projects.
Music, Meditation, Mathematics and Design in general have come to define my spirituality. The verse of Rumi and his thoughts on love and life have had a profound impact on me. I went to Turkey not too long ago and it was one of the most interesting experiences I have ever had. Studying and practicing music actively has been one of the most rewarding personal endeavors. I love to play the Congas because of how simple music is and I have come love the rhythms. I have been playing them for almost two years and enjoy it thoroughly: it relaxes me.
I have come to realize that the most important thing in my life are my personal relationships, my friends, family and acquaintances. Internally therefore, it is my life’s mission to strive to be a kinder more humane person by pushing my boundaries through inner and outer exploration. I try to do this by being a life-long learner and practicing love, compassion and kindness with myself. This process has been quite challenging and to balance this, I am keenly developing a warrior spirit that makes me stronger internally as well. In particular, I have developed a deep interest in Martial Arts, Aikido and study and the practice of Bushido.
I feel like I have had many lives and in my previous life, I was involved with open source software (Fedora Core), car companies, United Nations, Japan, MIT among other things.
I have had cygnus2936 as my online ID for as long as I can remember. The 2936 was the registration number on my first and only motorbike’s plate. It was a Kawasaki. Incidentally, it was also my telephone extension in one of my previous jobs. That was at Yamaha Music. That is when I had my own personal Keanu Reeves moment. As the years go by, I transition away from that ID and usually leave it for non-important things.
Now that seems so long ago.
I moved to this domain some time ago. It is a bit long but that’s my name. In real life, everyone calls me Hrishi. The H is silent so it is pronounced as ‘Reeshee’. The etymology is religious related to Hinduism, personally, I blame it on the English language because there is no English equivalent to the original Sanskrit character.
This site is hosted on WordPress.com and you can subscribe to the Atom or RSS feed to get the latest, additionally I am on Twitter and but if you want to get in touch, email is the best way to do so .
All content in this site is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Unless otherwise stated, everything here is © 1996 ~ 2013 Hrishikesh Ballal.