Monday, October 26, 2009

Moving to India - Part 1

I'm quitting Microsoft and America and pure software engineering, to move towards a life I always dreamt about. I'm moving back to India to build my startup focusing on economics & financial technology. It was not an easy decision and I had been sitting on the edge for a long time before jumping headlong into this triple transition. It will take a while for me to get used to without steady paychecks and getting used to the life back in India after 5.5 years.

Building my own business is something I had been ceaselessly dreaming since I was young. My extended family's succcess in business is pretty mixed, with my maternal uncles doing very well in their architecture, printing press and software business, while my paternal grandfather failed in his seafood business and my great grandfather lost his textile mills during Great Depression. But this mixed result wouldn't stop me from dreaming. I lived and studied in poor villages in southern India studying in schools with thatched roofs, but even that would not stop me from thinking the crazy stuff. Dreams were the cheapest form of entertainment.

My father is a banker and he had a number of manuals about running small businesses - to evaluate the businesses he was loaning to. I used to read them and keep playing with those numbers and success stories. Somehow those inspid manuals interested this school kid more than comics, cartoons and movies (probably because we didnt get good TV signals out there and there were no libraries nearby). In my high school, I used to read about S&P's bond ratings and Dow Jones Index in "The Hindu" newspaper's business column, without understanding the least about what they are. Until I came to highschool, science was a distant third to my favorite subjects - Math and Social Sciences (History & Economics). In highschool I developed a deep love for Physics and Computer Science and also by this time realized that while economics and finance can help me implement an idea, that idea has to come from prowess in technology.

I had no problems in choosing computer science as my major and when I joined college during the dotcom burst early this decade, my dreams turned into building a tech startup. I tried my hands at various ideas and at somepoint even got chosen for Far Eastern economic Reviews Young Inventor's awards in Singapore. But then I was not yet ready to build a company of my own. Once I graduated I moved to the US to do my graduate studies and pursue my research dreams. At some point I planned turn that research into a viable business.

I did reasonably well at grad school finishing up with 4.0 GPA. Once I was done with all my courses and my Masters thesis, I thought about getting work experience before going on to PhD. Microsoft gave me a pretty lucrative offer of joining as a developer in Core OS division. I had never worked in a company before and I immediately jumped on the opporunity to be a part of one of the most admired companies.

1 comment:

As i see it said...

All the best.. you will succeed either way!!!