CS371P Fall 2021: Vishal Tak

I will be documenting my progress in OOP through a series of blogs!

1. Where did you grow up?

I was born in Bikaner, Rajasthan, a small city in India, and immigrated to the United States at the age of 10. I spent the rest of my childhood in Round Rock, TX.

2. What high school did you attend?

I attended Pflugerville High School in Pflugerville, TX where I graduated in 2018. I had a great time, learned a lot from amazing teachers, and made lifelong friends. Go Panthers!

3. What was your favorite extracurricular activity in high school?

My favorite extracurricular activity in high school was the Robotics club. I enjoyed building robots and collaborating with my friends on projects to compete at the state and regional levels.

4. Why did you come to UT?

I came to UT as it offered the most bang of the buck out of all of the other colleges in Texas. Location ✓, In-state tuition ✓, Amazing professors ✓, World-class CS department ✓, and Exciting Football games ✓.

5. Why are you majoring in CS?

I’m majoring in CS as I really enjoy coding and problem-solving. My interest in CS was sparked from video games as I always wanted to build my own and for that, I needed to learn how to code. I was also fascinated with the way computers worked, both in terms of hardware and software, and wanted to learn more about them.

6. Why are you in this class? How much C/C++ do you already know?

I’m mainly taking this course to expand my knowledge of C/C++. I have had some experience with C/C++ from OS and Architecture but it wasn’t extensive. I also want to learn about the differences in object-oriented classes in C++ compared to Java.

7. How did you like the first lectures?

I had Professor Downing for SWE last semester where I learned a lot about software development, met great teammates, and really enjoyed his teaching style. I hope that we get more clarity with the setup of the class either being fully on zoom or back to in-person. It would be interesting to see how the class would work in person. The first lectures were pretty trivial with the exception of the new grading system that was introduced.

8. What are your expectations of this class?

My expectations are to put in the hours working on the assignments and in the end getting a lot out of the course while learning C++. However, with the introduction of the new grading system, I’m a bit confused as to how the assignments will be evaluated.

9. How did you feel about the cold calling?

As I said earlier, I took SWE last semester so I’m used to cold calling. Although cold-calling can be a bit stressful for some people, I think it’s a great way to interact with the class and Professor Downing.

10. What made you happy this week?

I was happy to be back on campus after spending the last year and a half at home. I had a great time meeting with friends who I had not seen during the pandemic.

11. What’s your pick-of-the-week or tip-of-the-week?

My tip of the week is to take time out of your schedule and do something you enjoy. The beginning of the semester can be a bit stressful with classes, waitlists, and early assignments so take some time off to do something fun.



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Vishal Tak

Vishal Tak

Computer Science student at the University of Texas at Austin. Hook Em'