Autumn Colours

This post is a bit late as we now near the end of autumn with more leaves on the ground than on the trees. But, what a spectacle we were treated to! The past month was one of the most hectic periods of my time in Sweden but stepping outdoors during the unusually warm autumn was certainly refreshing. Here are some of the best snaps I managed to capture from my old phone.

A few weeks from now, it will be a completely different sight. 😉



The Start of Year 2

It’s been a year! As I reminisced how a year went by since I landed in Sweden, there were a few familiar activities and events going on. In the week before the start of the new semester there was a lively atmosphere downtown with the annual food festival and the stadsfest. With the new students coming in, it was refreshing to see people throng to the streets.

There were stalls with food from various cuisines, as the flags in the pictures suggest.

I played tour guide for a day or two as two of my friends from India arrived that week to pursue their master studies here as well. Being with them reminded me of my thoughts last year as a newcomer and how much I have changed.

The Autumn semester kicked off last week with a some welcome activities and parties for new students and some much needed interesting course intros for the senior master students. I was refreshed and raring to go after a long summer. If time hasn’t flown by till now, it sure will hereon as I have my hands full with some really interesting projects. It is not going to be easy but I embrace the challenge. It’s certainly an exciting time!




The End of a Great Summer

After a three-month-long summer break, students are back in huge numbers at Campus Valla. While the vast majority of students went back home during the summer, I was among the very few who decided to stay back and experience a European summer.

The first few days of June were quite laid back and relaxed as I recovered from the hangover of an extremely hectic month. Many of my friends were still here so we hung around a lot playing volleyball, table tennis, cooking some delicious food and most of all, watching the world cup.

July, for me, was the most exciting month as I embarked on a trip of a lifetime. More about my travels to France and Italy in my personal blog here:

When I came back to Linköping in the end of July, the weather was uncharacteristically hot. There was record breaking temperatures everyday for about 2 to 3 weeks in what is dubbed as the hottest Swedish Summer in 200 years! So to cool off I paid a visit to the pool downtown and also to the beautiful lake beach in Motala, which is about 50 km from here.

               Lake Vattern, which looks like the ocean since it is 135 km long!

August was relatively dull, as I had to prepare for a couple of exams and many of my friends were yet to return from home. So I turned to the library and Netflix in my free time. But now, that much time comes at a premium with the next semester kicking off. So after a very memorable summer, here goes my final year in university.




Beautiful Gothenburg!

Now that all our exams are over, I am free to enjoy the summer without a care in the world! 😉 On the top of my list of things to do now is travel. Gothenburg was one place I was meaning to go ever since I came here so I gathered a few friends and decided to spend a weekend exploring the city.

We boarded the late night bus and reached our destination early next morning. This is the most economical way of traveling to Gothenburg from Linköping. Since, there were five of us, we booked an apartment through Airbnb, which was also reasonable. After freshening up, we were off to explore the archipelago. The best way to get there is to board a ferry from Stenpiren, in the city center. Before that, we bought a travel pass which would cover all modes of transport in the city for 24 hours since the time it is activated. The pass costs 95 kr. Ferry no. 281 took us right from Stenpiren to Vrångö, the last big island on the archipelago.

Views of the city from the waterway:

..And then, we moved on into the open crystal blue..

The island of Donsö is was bustling with fishing and other shipping activity. There was a few cafes for tourists. We took a stroll around by the docked fishing boats and explored the island before settling by a cosy spot by the water.

We  then came back to the city and explored the central districts. It was a typical Friday evening in the summer. Lots of people had come out and were having a great time. I loved the atmosphere!

It was easy to get into the evening mood and we too started enjoying ourselves starting with a lovely meal at Pinchos.

On the next day, we decided to visit The Universeum, the biggest science centre in Scandinavia. This place is paradise for science geeks! It has a massive “Ocean Zone”, where you can witness the beautiful marine life. It was like were we on the ocean bed!

And, what’s more? There a forest with actual tropical animals within a huge green house! This place is insane when you think about the astronomical cost required to maintain this place!


After spending the morning and afternoon in the Universeum, we had some more time to kill before we headed back to Linköping. Right next to the Universeum, the Swedish Museum of world culture caught our eye. This place was amazing too! There were a lot of interesting stories in there with the display of some really cool artefacts as well. I am not posting pictures of them here as it wouldn’t do justice to the musuem. You have to visit the place, read and hear the stories.

Gothenburg is a city that I will definitely visit again. There is so much to see and do! So until next time..



Course Review – Product Modeling

In the second study period of the spring semester (VT2 – 2108), I had taken up Product Modeling (TMKT57). This was by far the most fun course till now and also the one where I worked most hard on. The objective of the course is basically to learn and execute design automation through CATIA, the 3D CAD software by linking it with the Visual Basic Coding Macros in Microsoft Excel.

Course info:

For me, this course was always going to be a challenge because I was neither familiar with CATIA nor coding in Visual Basic. So I had a lot of catching up to do. Fortunately, this is the case for many students who enroll in this course so we were given time and material to touch the basics and proceed into the more advanced concepts in quick succession.

I also have to give special mention to our professor, Mehdi Tarkian. The introduction he gave to the course was very enthusiastic and encouraging. The university could do with more professors like him, who gets students excited about what the course has to offer. The most interesting part of the course was the project. Each project group, comprising between 3 to 5 people each, could choose a project of their own choice, provided they met certain requirements of the course.

Our group, as a whole, had no experience with CATIA or coding. But it didn’t stop us from choosing an ambitious project. We wanted to be among the top project groups at the end of the course. We knew right from the start that we need to work for long hours tirelessly. Initially, we took our time to get the basics right before we met to decide what project we were going to choose.

We had to think of a project which would be challenging and at the same time be applicable to design automation principles. We decided that we were going to model a roller coaster, which could be customized into many configurations by the end user. And thus, it began. As we worked everyday, all weekend from morning to evening, through every weekend, our progress was riddled with obstacles. It was never smooth. This was quite understandable since we were all amateurs. The lab assistants were of great help during the scheduled sessions. But when they weren’t around, it was like we were left in the open wild to fend for ourselves!

Most of the time we spent for our project was to solve problems that we faced rather than divided work flow. In retrospect, this is where we learnt a lot. We not only learnt a lot about CAD modeling, and coding but also problem solving. After a lot of skipped meals and overnight sessions, we finally completed our project, within just a few hours before our presentation.

Although, we had a few thing missing, the professor was kind enough to grant us a good grade as he recognized the colossal amount of work we put through. We were clear in stating the things we learnt and what we would do differently if we could start over.

To sum up, this was a course where we were out on a steep learning curve and I personally feel I have upgraded my knowledge in many aspects. That’s all that matters at the end. I’m sure I will keep at these concepts and learn more. If you are a student thinking about specializing in Engineering Design, do not think twice about choosing this course and make the most of it! 🙂