Fun Facts about our Google Summer of Code Interns

Now that you know a bit more about our interns professionally and what they’re working on over the summer, let’s take a more a personal look at their lives with some fun facts about each one of them.

When and why did you start coding?

Sanyam: I was introduced with computer science and coding at my school level, where students were introduced with website designing using HTML, CSS. and also experienced to do hands on development on some very basics robotics projects. Then I was introduced with some more languages like C, C++, Java in my freshman year at my college in August 2014. I started developing more skills with programming because it really helps me to think the solution of problems in a slightly different way and programming is a skill that we can apply in life in general.

CourageI started coding in my first year at the university, 2014. At that time we had a club called elite programming club, I studied C programming daily and with each day I learned something new. It was amazing to know what I could do with code.

EbenezerI started coding with understanding in January 2017. This is because I started taking the programming course in my class. But prior to this. I was coding by following tutorials since 2015 and this was because I was passionate about creating softwares.

Aksh: I started coding in August 2015,Being admitted in CSE branch at IIT Mandi, doing coding at some point was inevitable so I started learning as soon as I got admitted. I started coding with C as my first programming language and the ever famous “Hello world” as my first program which I successfully ran after several compilation errors, “;” being the pesky one again.

Anwesh: I started with learning coding fundamentals in school days. Then after joining University I started diving deeper and started exploring many areas in Computer Science. Web development and UI/UX designing piqued my interest the most and I am carrying on with the journey till date.

Abhay:  I was introduced to computer science in early school days where we had regular classes learning to use various softwares including Microsoft Office, MicroWorlds Logo, Adobe Illustrator etc. Fascinated with everything a computer could do since then, I developed an interest in coding while learning basics of C++, HTML, CSS and Javascript in secondary school. Although having been worked in the field of software development in Javafx for over an year of my college, I decided to do something different and pursue web development last year.

Kumaranath: It was in the year 2013,when I took my first software engineering and programming  lessons. I was intrigued to find out what and how we as engineers we would solve problems in real life and make an impact to the world. 

Dilpreet: I learnt the basis of web development in 10th grade and after studying c++ in 11th and 12th grade. I fell in love coding when I was introduced to Android Development during 2nd semester of my college.

Lalit: I learnt basics of programming on FORTRAN in 1993 as part of my academic curriculum. My serious programming started in 1997 and continued till I took project management role in 2004. My programming stint was in C, C++, Java, Visual Basic and COBOL. I again started programming in 2014 after getting back to academics, this time it was primarily focused to complete assignments using Java and/or Python. 

Ankur: I started coding from 11th standard. I wrote my first program in JAVA outputting “Hello World :)”. It was the first time I realized I can make computers do what I want. I chose programming course in my school which introduced me to basics of programming

SakshamI wrote my first “Hello World” program when I joined college. Initially, I struggled a lot but gradually improved and enjoyed my struggles. Making stuffs to help others, was something I always wanted to do, and hence I started my career in Development.

Ankit: I started coding when I was in class 4th. I started it as it was in my school curriculum and from that time I got interested in coding. The first programming language I started coding was with BASIC( Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code) and from there my story with coding started. After that, I learned GW-BASIC, HTML. I took Computer Science in my class 11th and 12th where I learned C++. After coming to college I learned Python, AngularJs, C, and Java.

ManishMy first exposure to coding was in my freshman year where we have to do a course to grasp the basics of c++ . I started coding because I love to develop things which solves real life problems either through an app or a machine learning model.

Dingfan: I start coding when I was in senior high school. I attended the class which taught basic algorithms in my senior school. The reason that I continue learning Computer Science in university is that I like to solve problems in a systematic way. Coding can be used to solve the problem step by step, which is a systematic method.

Ruphine: I started coding in my second year at the university during the summer holidays when I was doing internship at Skylabase Inc. My mentors used to talk about the power of coding so I decided to get involved into it to see what i can do with some lines of codes and now am seeing the output which is pretty amazing.

Pembe: I started coding 3 years ago at my first year in the university. At first it was because coding was part of the school requirements to graduate but later, I grew fond of it and began to do more research and grew deep into coding .[/av_one_half]

Of all the projects, you could have applied to for Google Summer of Code, why Mifos?

Ebenezer: Mifos is pursuing a great initiative and a mission that attracts me. I wish to help Africa and many developing countries leapfrog into technological advancement by using scaleable world-class technologies but at an affordable cost and Apache Fineract CN helps such developing countries to create world-class microfinance applications.

SanyamI discovered Mifos from Google Summer of Code 2017, when the list of organisations came out which matches my skill set and work on projects that will create a direct impact on people’s life by fighting poverty. The motive of Mifos “End Poverty One Line of Code at a Time” always motivates me to contribute to Mifos.

Courage: Mifos’ mission is to speed the elimination of poverty. I live in a developing country and I would love to work with mifos to help my country, Africa, and other countries.

Dilpreet: I wanted to be a part and contribute to an organization which impacts the life of people and Mifos helps small communities or providers by providing them a platform where they can provide better financial services to the poor people thus helping poor people on a global scale due to which I chose Mifos.

Pembe: I came across Mifos Initiative for the first time during my academic internship last year at Skylabase Inc, a silver platform solution partner with the Mifos Initiative. I got interested in their vision of ending poverty, one line of code at a time and also the fact that Mifos X is an open source platform for financial inclusion to help poor people get access to financial resources needed to better their lives so I wanted to be part of those who are making this vision happen. Since then I have been following up the development of the project.

Ruphine:  I was attracted by Mifos ‘s mission which is to speed the eradication of  poverty and I decided to take part in this mission so as to reduce the rate at which poverty is increasing in my local community and in other countries.

AnkurFrom numerous organizations, when I came to know about Mifos and explored the community, I wanted to work for such a great cause that Mifos is working on because I am fascinated by the idea of giving transparency to users and making services user friendly, so that many people will have access to a digital means of financial transaction at their fingertips with no ambiguity. 

Abhay: I was introduced to Mifos Initiative last year while looking for projects that involved AngularJS. The community’s mission to provide a platform for every individual so that they can have access to financial services to create a better future for themselves and their family really motivated me to become a part of the organisation. Their tagline ‘End Poverty – One line of code at a time’ inspires all developers out there, to work together for making the world a better place using open source technologies.

Lalit: Getting back to Academics after 17 years was fun and challenging. For the last 3+ years, I was focussed in completing my course work and bringing a shape to my research. Participating in GSOC would give me a kick to work with younger and brilliant programmers.

Majority of my professional career was executing banking technology projects. During some of these years, I had a privilege to implement technology in cooperative banks and agricultural cooperative societies located in remote locations of India. I feel working with Mifos provides me an opportunity to learn and share technology innovations in cooperative sector.

Saksham: Always wanted to use my Development Skills to help others in a better living. So here, I’m at Mifos.

AnkitI am really fascinated by the goal of Mifos to deliver financial services to 2 billion poor and unbanked people. I selected Mifos in a hope that my code will affect people’s lives and will bring change to the society.

Kumaranath: To contribute to the betterment of the poor community around the world, make a positive impact on their livelihood and work towards the realization of mission of the Mifos foundation which is to “speed the elimination of poverty by enabling financial service providers to more effectively and efficiently deliver responsible financial services to the world’s 2.5 billion poor and unbanked”

Manish: The fact that motivates me the most to contribute to this organisation is that Mifos promotes the true spirit of open source and works for the betterment of society using the technology we have at our disposal in today’s day and age. The fact that I will be able to help millions of people across the globe with my passion brings me great satisfaction.

DingfanIn the application period, I only chose Mifos as my preference of project. The reason is that I can see not only the depth in technical knowledge, but also the meaningfulness to solve the practical question around the world, which is poverty issues. Hence, I would like to make my own contribution towards this project.

You’ve only been a part of the community for a few weeks now but you all have made such great contributions, what’s been most rewarding for you so far?

Aksh: I generated my First Pull request on December 30,2017. From that day I have generated around 60PRs and created around 60 issues and the sole reason for such rampage being the utter bliss I got.When my first PR got merged I was exhilarated with the joy it brought. The ultimate reason being that the application which would be used by millions of people around the globe would have a part of my code as well,this was rewarding for me.I continued to savour this joy by contributing more and more. The joy of contributing my bit to open source and self satisfaction it brought was next level.

SanyamIt’s a great experience in working with Mifos Initiative and interacting with Mifos community which is always eager to help each other. Furthermore, the opportunity to have hands-on experience on a Fintech backend application and solving problems together gave me the opportunity to learn a lot in the whole process.

Ruphine: Seeing my first pull request been merged , I became very excited that i can do something no matter how small  which can help a million number of people and I also became encouraged to work harder.

Ebenezer: I love the fact that I have learnt how to professionally use GitHub. I love the idea that I built a cloud application on google cloud

Courage: Seeing my first pull request merged. I was excited to know that somehow even if it’s just a little I had contributed to Mifos.

Dilpreet: Getting “Merged Tag” on my first PR in this open source world last year in Mifos was the most rewarding thing for me which motivated me to contribute more.

Pembe: The fact that I get to work with others and to be able to give account of my daily progress. Also to have mentors who are willing to help me explain the big picture and also to have domain experts help me.

Ankur: First of all, getting my proposal accepted by Mifos is most rewarding for me so far as I am very passionate to see this project come to fruition. I started with contributing to Self Service App on which I found a bug and fixed it, and there was one more issue in that app which I fixed with mentor’s help. Rajan Maurya has been extremely helpful. The work on the issues and bug reported by me could not have been possible without his help. Rajan helped clear many of my doubts.

LalitMy coding contributions are yet to start. I feel the instantaneous responses across levels suggest a flat structure and the urge to contribute in Mifos community.

Saksham: “Learning” has been the best reward that I learned from Mentors and fellow interns while make contributions.

Ankit:  With the contributions I made to the organisation the most rewarding was the PRs that got merged.

Abhay: The community app has a huge codebase and although my contributions have been small, getting the first pull request merged on an open source project being utilized to help people all over the world was the most rewarding experience for me and motivated me to become a part of the community.

Kurmaranath: Attempting to solving validation bug in the community app. It seemed so simply at first, but learnt a lot on coding conventions and best practices upheld by the Mifos community itself.

ManishI think whatever I learnt from the codebase which is a lot for me was kind of reward for me.

DingfanThe most rewarding is that I get improvement from technical side even I am only involved in the project for a few weeks and also have a more general view about the product after communicating with my mentors.

What is the one thing you’re hoping to learn or take away from your Google Summer of Code internship?

Kumaranath: Build good friendships and help the community realize its noble objective by making true impact.In addition, enhance my skillset and also, gain exposure to developing open source products.

Sanyam: Google Summer of Code provides a pool of opportunities as it provide a great platform to connect with developers across the globe and to discuss various code strategies and how we can improve on a specific approach or coding style.
In addition, GSoC program helps in connecting with professionals developers, connecting with a great open source community which overall helps me in enhancing my skill set and also gain experience and exposure to open source projects.

Ebenezer I want to confidently say that I can build a full Java application. I want to learn to professionally use GitHub and work with a community in building a software.

Courage: I am hoping to learn a lot and improve my skills. I am also hoping to meet and work with new people.

Ashk: GSoC is the time when you get to meet some of the most amazing people from different parts of the world,learn about them,learn the best coding experience and practices from the community and use the latest technology which seemed a buzzword or jargon prior to GSoC. Thus I am hoping to fill my bag with the learning experience which GSoC would offer and hoping to know some of the brilliant people out there.

AnweshBe a better all-around developer and improve my UI/UX design skills.

Ruphine: Experience working on open source projects and helping people across the world, and also the diversify knowledge acquired when working with people from different parts of the world.

Dilpreet: I hope to learn writing clean and understandable code for a large code base and hoping to communicate with amazing people.

AnkurI enjoy Android programming and see this GSOC as a means to sharpen my skills, and knowing how open-source communities work. And as I mentioned, working for such a cause is a major plus.

Lalit: I am looking to compete with younger generation programmers and also use the developed plugins to demonstrate the myths and facts of machine learning in Indian banking industry.

Pembe: The experience of working on an open source code.

Saksham: Apart from scaling up and improving my project, I would also love to scale up and improve my Development Skills.

Ankit: I hope to develop my skills as a developer and learn how to work with the huge codebase.

Abhay: I am looking forward to enhance my technical knowledge and learn as much as I can working together with the community, making regular contributions and new connections with people at the same time.

KunmaranathBuild good friendships and help the community realize its noble objective by making true impact.In addition, enhance my skillset and also, gain exposure to developing open source products

Manish: I want to enhance my coding skills and learn as much as I can in the following months of my internship, also I would like to make new connections with the people in the community.

Dingfan: I hope to learn advanced technology from this project and also would like to make good friends in this project and keep in touch after this project. Furthermore, we can always make contribution on open source project.

Most of us on the project have been away from college for a number of years but we all have fond memories – what’s your most memorable experience from university thus far?

Ankur: In my second semester of college, my team built a bot which finds lost objects. Achieving such skills at such an early time and getting received commendation from Director of Institute is the most memorable experience from IIITD so far.

Sanyam: The most memorable experience from the university is to connect with a pool of batch on the orientation day of the college, The Junior – Senior Interactions, Managing college fests and making lifelong friendship during that interaction is the most memorable experience from the university.

EbenezerI recall arriving on in my university as one of the first students to start the university and I was one of the most exciting and enlightening experience ever.

CourageI had to present for an International Women’s Day event and my presentation was really technical and I was to present to a non-technical crowd. The challenge was to make at least one non-technical person understand my presentation. And I at the end of the presentation I got an accounting student to understand RESTful web services. I was soooo impressed with myself. That was the most memorable experience from my university thus far.

Pembe: My most memorable experience in the university was the first continuous assessment that I wrote. It was my first year in the university and I was still excited of being in the university. I had promised myself that I will not fail an exam. That fateful day, the teacher gave a surprise test on his first day of class and I scored 6 on 30 from that day I learned my mistake and stopped being excited.

AkshI am currently in my 6th semester and had experienced quality time in my college.The most memorable experiences includes playing fifa during late night hours,watching endless tv series,spoiling game of thrones for those who have not watched it ,appearing for college examinations without having any clue of syllabus 24 hours before and all the cherished moments spend having mischief with friends. PS: I had my exam the next day the GSoC result was announced. I could neither study nor sleep due to the excitement of making it through. I went for the examination without even opening my book,gave the examination and still came out with a smile. Not because I had performed well in examination but because of the joy of being a GSoC intern. 

Anwesh: From winning college hackathon in freshman year, to making some amazing friends, learning things beyond computer science domain, studying a day before exams. It was one of the amazing experience. Also being in my final year nothing makes me more glad than getting into GSOC program given it was my last chance at it.

Dilpreet: Going to hackathons and attending meetups where I got to explore and learn a lot of new things in the development world.

LalitCompeting with young and bright engineers and contributing to society through programming.

Saksham:  Of late, getting selected for Research Internship in University of Malaya.

Ankit: The most memorable experience from university thus far is when I and my friends together made the “Harlem Shake” video in the hostel 😉

Kumaranath: Approaching then unknown colleagues during the first day of orientation.

Manish: There are many things, I don’t know how to describe them all but band nights during the college fest is one of the memorable experiences for me. 

Ruphine: My first presentation on ”Billing Systems in a Network” during the Womentechmaker (WTM)  event in Buea. I was so tense and afraid in the beginning but seeing the way people were following up attentively, I regain confidence ,boldness and went to the end of the presentation.The event was a indeed a successful one.

Abhay: The most memorable experience from the university for me is to be fortunate enough to have so supportive and helpful friends and seniors that always believe in me and encourage me to push my potential. I hope to keep these friendships throughout my life.

DingfanMy most memorable experience is the time when I was a freshman. At that time we had orientation of university, which was exciting and interesting. I made good friends with a lot of seniors. 

Share something about your local culture that the community and other interns might like to know

Lalit: The best way we celebrate festivals is relishing delicious dishes made with mustard. However, my best dish is rice with Lentils and Mango pickle with ghee, followed by curd rice with loads of cream, especially during hot summer in India.

AkshThough the country is known for its diverse culture, the thing I admire most about India is the cuisines which it offers. One should try Indian cuisines in his/her lifetime at least once.

Ankit: I come from Ranchi, Jharkhand in India. It has people of different cultures, so, you can find all the festivals being celebrated there and can find all sorts of Indian cuisines.

Ebenezer: I am Ghanaian and an Akan. The Akan’s have a way of automatically identifying the name of a person simply be knowing the day they were born. For instance, I am born on Sunday hence I am called Kwesi. Every male Akan born on Sunday is called Kwesi.

Ankur: Cricket is a pseudo-religion for me and my friends. I love taking part in various tournaments that organized locally. Delhi also has a vibrant Hackathon culture, of which I am a huge subscriber of.

Pembe: In my area we mostly practice apprenticeship where a child whose parents cannot sponsor him or her to school will be given to somebody called “oga” to work with him and learn the trade in averagely 6 years after which the “oga” will open the same trade for the child with some capital to start with.

Abhay: India offers a wide variety of mouth watering cuisines including paranthas, chole, bhature and many more which are definitely worth giving a try and relish for a lifetime if one gets a chance to visit here.

Anwesh: I am from Bhubaneswar, India. City of temples, amazing street food and really humble people. 

 Courage: In our culture, women don’t eat the gizzard of a chicken.

Ruphine:  In my culture, it is believed that twins are born with some natural powers.

Manish: India is a secular country full of diversity and well known for its festivals.I think all the festivals celebrated here are worth watching.

Dilpreet:  I am from Delhi, India and Delhi has mixture of different communities of India

Kumaranath: I’m from a quite diverse culture of many ethnicities and it’s interesting to learn, accept and work with people from different backgrounds and social levels.

Sanyam: India is a beautiful country and famous all over the world for its unique cultures and traditions. It is famous for its historical heritages and monuments. It is also known as the land of spirituality, philosophy, science and technology

Dingfan: My hometown is China and I pursue my university education in Singapore. One interesting thing about my local culture is that we have two different ways to calculate the date (lunar calendar and normal calendar), and we celebrate our spring festival at the end of every year according to the lunar calendar.

Share one fun fact about yourself

Manish: I like to skate in my free time especially in night with my friends.

Sanyam: I’m a music lover with preference for slow songs. Along with that, I’m also a foodie, always looking out for new and exciting vegetarian options. Lastly, I have a sweet spot for dogs.

Aksh: I am lazy but a different kind of lazy person, I can code for hours without getting tired or showing any amount of laziness but I inhibit a different kind of laziness when supposed to take a bath and doing any social stuff like going out which normal humans do.

Ankit: I am an Anime and TV Series lover :). I watch too much of Anime and TV Series.

Pembe: I love dancing and singing.

Abhay: I like to watch a variety of shows including Silicon Valley, Sherlock, Westworld and Game of Thrones for their outstanding stories.

AnkurI follow a lot of American TV-Shows (Breaking Bad is my favourite). I also do PC Gaming (mostly CS:GO).

AnweshHonestly I am quite friendly and approachable. 

EbenezerI format my PC a lot and simply to try out difference linux distros.

Courage: I still watch cartoons.

Dilpreet: I love to listen to EDM all day.

Ruphine: I love to crack jokes and to dance.

Raunak: I do love to crack jokes and I believe I have a good sense of humor, as I’ve been told.

Mohit: I am capable of sleeping anywhere, anytime. I love sleeping a lot. I have also some addiction for Quora 😀

Dilpreet: I am an EDM fan and I listen to Skrillex and Marshmello all the time.

Dingfan: Although I am a bit heavy, my favorite exercise is jogging. I can think about a lot things when I do jogging.

If you could travel to one place in the world where would it be?

Dingfan: Iceland, I would like to visit Iceland and view the scene of aurora.

Courage Neuschwanstein, a nineteenth-century castle in southern Germany is the inspiration for Disneyland’s Sleeping Beauty Castle. This German retreat is visited regularly during summer months as a symbol of refuge and peace.

Pembe: USA

Ruphine:  I will love to travel to Bahamas.

Abhay: I’d like to travel and explore the beautiful city of Paris.

SanyamI’d like to travel to Google HQ, Mountain View, California, US.

Kumaranath: Would love to trip around exotic cities in europe.

Manish: I would love to travel to Finnmark,Norway to see the northern lights because it fascinates me very much.

Lalit: Kailash Mansarovar and it is likely to happen in the coming months!!

SakshamWould love to go to “Silicon Valley” to meet “new Tech and Techies” and would love to have “Tech Talks with Techies”.

Dilpreet: Silicon Valley

Ebenezer: I would travel to sound South Africa. I love the intonation and sound of the local dialects in the country

Anwesh: Norway to see the northern lights.

Ankur: Paris is the city I would love to explore.

Ankit: I would like to go to Switzerland.

Aksh: Though there might be lot of places with great scenic beauty and serenity but the place which I would like to visit if given a chance would be Google headquarters,Mountain View, California, United States. I want to work there if I am lucky enough 

If you could have lunch with anybody (living or deceased) in the world, who would it be? What would you have for lunch?

Ankit: I would like to have lunch with Stephen Hawking because I am very into Astrophysics and I wanted to ask him lots of questions. I would have ordered my choice for me and his choice for him.

AkshI would like to have a lunch with the undoubtedly Greatest of all time(G.O.A.T) football star Lionel Messi somewhere in Dubrovnik (aka Kings Landing of Game of Thrones). I would love to have a number of Indian Chicken (my favourite) delicacies served.

Ankit:  I would like to have lunch with Stephen Hawking because I am very into Astrophysics and I wanted to ask him lots of questions. I would have ordered my choice for me and his choice for him.

Ankur:  I would like to have lunch with Robert Downey Jr and would like to share pizza with him.

Manish: I would like to have lunch with lead cast of Silicon Valley.  Anything of their choice.

Abhay: I would like to have lunch with my mother, anything that she’d like.

Anwesh: Ed. Leader of this community. He has been very patient with me since beginning helping out even with small problems. Mifos has grown so well under him over span of time.

Ebenezer I would have lunch with Jesus Christ. We would eat Ga kenkey with shrimps, octopus, shito and pepper with onions 

 Courage:  I would like to have achu with William Henry Gates III.

Kumaranath: Christ Ryan,ex-SAS, a person with undying determination.

DilpreetEllon Musk, eating pizza and coke

Saksham: Obviously, Mark Zuckerberg, would have “Chicken Biryani” with him for lunch.

Ruphine: Steve Jobs

Kumaranath: Christ Ryan,ex-SAS, a person with undying determination

Lalit: With my wife on weekdays, this means my life has become more relaxed Of course my favorite Lentils and Mango pickle rice.

Manish: I would love to have lunch with Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Anything of his choice.

Pembe: Bill Gates, Fried rice and fried chicken.

Zhao: I would like to have lunch with Iceberg, which is the designer of a glorious game – Defence of the Ancients. The menu of the lunch can be anything he likes.