Entrepreneur & Beyond!

with Co-Founder of Nascor Technologies Pvt Ltd
with Co-Founder of Nascor Technologies Pvt Ltd

Interested to explore a career as an Entrepreneur? Today we bring to you second interview with N K Narasimhan, one of the founder’s of Nascor Technologies (http://www.nascorgroup.com). Ex-employee of L & T, Sun Microsystems and Yahoo! who has over two decades of work experience under our unique section ‘Test it’! For more information keep a tab at this page (https://www.facebook.com/Without.interview). You may feel free to post your question in message box or comment and the interviewee would answer over the next few days from 03 Jan 2015 till 07 Jan 2015. We hope you have a great career ahead!

Narasimhan, welcome to ‘Test IT’ section and congratulation for being in Top 5 of  Infosys ‘+91 Start Up Challenge’ Photo : Infosys – Facebook Page 

Author: Tell us about your background and education.

Narasimhan: I completed my engineering in Industrial & Production from SJCE, Mysore, finishing as a College Topper throughout and with rank 7 for the University of Mysore.

Author: How did you land in an IT job?

Narasimhan: I started programming with widely known as BASIC (an acronym for Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code) while studying PUC (1985-86) using Casio PB 100 which supported a condensed BASIC version for programming. My brother was a great influencers who was pursuing engineering. I eventually joined engineering at SJCE, Mysore and FORTRAN was the language that existed as first year course. I took to learn ‘C’ in my second year. There used to be one hour slot given for each one to book to do Unix & C programming in Computer Science Lab. Lot of times, used to get midnight slots. Our final year project was a software cross assembler & a post processor for CNC machine with a graphics editor which caught the attention of the examiner. The complexity, effort & contribution was highly appreciated which was a big milestone for a graduate student. Through campus interview, I was placed in L & T and worked on rotational initially but one of manager put me into Test automation involving mechatronics. With help from seniors, contributed in various projects using machine language, Turbo C, C++ and Microsoft Visual C++ 4.2. After six years of working with L&T moved to Yokogawa that was in and out into software product development – worked on system software, server development etc., rising up the ranks, this further continued at Sun Microsystems and Yahoo!.

Author: You have worked as a tester and developer role. How is your overall years of experience?

Narasimhan: Sun Microsystems was the place of transition from development to testing. I started looking into quality. This also waved a path from individual contributor to manager (engineering) and this continued at Yahoo! Both companies had different view on testing and i believed that development & testing as two sides of the same coin, hand in glove, spearheading to brand as ‘Quality Engineering’, ( always question ‘how to engineer quality into software products’ ) and engineer’s as QE. (Quality Engineer). This helped me to be versatile, (able to wear different hats) critique my deliverables too. Perhaps this gave birth to duality. Also, this allowed me to hire the best candidates from institutions such as IISc, Bengaluru. Me & my QE team at Sun developed SIFT (Sun one integrated frame-work for testing ) that helped to simulate failures and emulate complex, real world user scenarios. Over time, adoption among different teams increased, emerging as a versatile Test automation development platform of choice within the Sun community.

Author: What are your views on being a tester or a developer? 

Narasimhan: (Thinks) The demarcation is unhealthy. If one need to be a good tester, then the aspirant has to be a good developer. It’s vice-versa as well. One who could be critic of his own work and welcome feedback from others. Preferably to start as a developer for some years because, it is maturity that is needed to become a tester. Testing skills are better honed while being a developer. This makes a best tester and evolves to ‘engineer’ Quality. Sometimes, Creativity & Innovation needed to test a product is more complex & interesting than development of a product itself. There is an ‘I‘ in QUAL’I’TY and Creative bend of mind is equally needed for a tester. I feel, both cannot be differentiated in a physical way and every organisation adopts their own approach to bring in distinction & differentiation.

Author: Could you give insights on being an entrepreneur?

Narasimhan: Survival, sustain and beyond is something that one need to look forward. Can you translate an idea to a business? In other terms do you have a business case? If the answer is yes, then its worth a risk. Business case need not have an innovation but can satisfy a need. There could be micro level changes in terms of innovation for the requirement or even create a need. If an idea is really unique or has a business case, then its Google for you! Even timing, being in the right place & right time matters. Good examples like Flipkart, RedBus, Xiaomi etc.

Author: What are your hobbies?

Narasimhan: One thing I always have been doing is – ‘give life, extend the life of any object’. This means I repair things (reduce wastage, resource utilisation) and it has been a natural activity right from my childhood days. This has immensely helped me acquire newer skills, like delve on – how it works, why, how, design intent, perspective, understand the thought process of the innovator etc. Apart from that reading technical and philosophical books is something that keeps me glued.

Author: How did you find ‘Get a Job WITHOUT an Interview’ book helpful to aspiring software engineers and IT professionals?

Narasimhan: This is a must read for every grad aspiring to work for renowned product company biggies. Easy reading, gives a lot of insight about big companies, concise, covering all perspectives in 80+ pages. When i was going through “Impression” (section 9), I was recollecting, an article stating based on studies & surveys, an interviewer makes a +ve or -ve impression in the first few seconds and the rest of the interview will be to self validate/justify his opinions about the aspiring candidate. As an age old saying goes, making the ‘best’ first impression is important. In my experience, I have come across such interviewers. In this context, I liked the coverage under “impressions” which candidates tend to ignore or overlook.

Also, change is a constant and candidates should iterate on Annexure 1 & 2 – ways to learn & how to learn, to achieve & sustain a positive career trajectory.

Author: Thank you Narasimhan for your valuable time and inspiring our aspiring engineer’s to become a test engineers, in your terminology ‘QE’

Narasimhan: Thanks (smiles)

To know more about Narasimhan’s organisation: 

Nascor Technologies, Bangalore, (http://www.nascorgroup.com) is a Software product Start-up, in pursuit of Transforming email platforms to deliver email users VALUE beyond ‘just’ Communication.

Email usage & overload is on the rise. A working individual spends an average 28% time on emails. Nascor with its vision, aims to touch every emailer on the globe, alleviate their pain points by providing products & solutions, by making emailing easy with intuitive, innovative, productivity tools to manage ones work and emails too.

Nascor’s tZirrTM (pronounced as teaser ) has five high impactful productivity features, downloadable for emailers to experience on Microsoft Outlook. Nascor’s  U@Work (patent pending) is a top line product, currently under development designed to offers a light weight solution for any business operation, to manage ones work and as a group collaboratively ‘manage work’ covering projects, activities, resources, meetings, tasks etc.

Readers – aspiring software engineer’s , IT professionals and entrepreneur’s are free to leave your message for Narasimhan to answer on or before 07 Jan, 2015. We hope you are enjoying this section, feel free to leave your message for us to improve. Next week we shall bring to you another personality of a Top company. We wish you a great new year 2015. Till then, ‘Test IT’!  

If you missed the first interview : Check here

(c) Amrita Foundation

Test IT

SachinInterested to explore career in IT Testing? Today we bring to you first interview with Sachin K, ex-employee of Yahoo! and Microsoft who has over 10 years of work experience under our unique section ‘Test it’! His first book with unique title ‘Bug‘ is set to release in July/August 2016.

For more information keep a tab at this page (https://www.facebook.com/Without.interview). You may feel free to post your question to in message box or comment and the interviewee would answer over next few days from 26 Dec 2014 till 03 Jan 2015. We wish you a great career ahead!

Bio of Sachin: He has over 10+ years of experience in Software Testing. He has worked mainly in the Web Domains with the wide range of applications spanning Ad Systems, Job Sites, Search, Locals etc. He is passionate to explore new things and for him the innovation is fixing small things that make the work more effective.

Sachin, welcome to ‘Test IT’ section –

Author: Tell us about your background and education.

Sachin: I completed all my Education from Bagalkot, District a place in North Karnataka. I passed out from Basaveshwara Engineering College, Bagalkot in Year 2003.

Author: How did you land in an IT job?

Sachin: I came to Bangalore in 2004 mid. I didn’t get through GATE Exam which I had prepared for 6 months. Expectations were high and I had to prove a point to myself than to others. There was no particular area I was looking for to start with. I wanted to get  a job so that I can make a living in the Garden City. I had all the support from my parents both in terms of motivation and taking care of my daily needs. I landed in GTRE (DRDO group) through a consultancy and was doing Calibration of Machines. After a month or so I joined Affinity Software through a referral which I could call as my first entry in the Software Industry.

Author: It’s relevant that you are working in Testing Domain. How is your overall years of experience?. 

Sachin: It has been a decade-long journey in software testing but the opportunities to learn and prove never seizes. I have worked on a lot of applications, testing types, used many testing techniques at different stages of my career. For first 3-4 years I was very raw as any IT newbie, so I used to contribute to many projects, filed lot of bugs and of course stand for them and get it fixed (smiles). Later in the quest of learning new things such as Test Automation which I have been continued to learn over a period of time. I have also done Performance testing of Large Scale Applications which dealt with Data in Billions of units.

(Thinks) In all these, I have learnt a way to ensure quality of the product is very good and I collaborate well with other team members and cross core teams. Sense of ownership and passionate to do more is what keeps me going in this area.

Author: Why did you choose to work in a testing role as developer role is expected to be an aspired role?

Sachin: Yes testing role versus developer is an interesting choice but a preferred one for me over the last 10+ years. I would say it was a Mix of People who I met during my First Software Job and tendency of me being a person who likes to think more of quality and then asking others to check quality of my work. I think once I started learning testing basics, I found it interesting. Amount of Scope and Ownership which testing brings in amazes me. Also, people around me who had done great things as testers also inspired me to be a tester.

Author: What are your hobbies?

Sachin: Hobbies – Sharing interesting bits about work to Friends, Social Networking, Youtubing for some fun series and of course Cricket (smiles).

Author: What is your daily routine?
Sachin: From being very task specific I have become process specific over the last few years. So my daily routine revolves around solving problems smartly and finding long term solutions. Otherwise, I would spend some time with my daughter and also watch a bit of news on my favourite show at Times Now, Primetime (smiles).


Author: How did you find ‘Get a Job WITHOUT an Interview’ book helpful to aspiring software engineers and IT professionals?

Sachin: Book is helpful in following ways:
1. Gives specific details on how to prepare for interviews.
2. What to expect in interviews and how to approach when u get a call from big tech companies.

Author: Thank you Sachin for your valuable time and inspiring our aspiring engineer’s to become a test engineer’s. 

Sachin: Thanks (smiles)

Readers – aspiring software test engineer’s and IT professionals are free to leave your message for Sachin to answer on or before 03 Jan, 2015. We hope you are enjoying this section, feel free to leave your message for us to improve. Next week we shall bring to you another personality who is a Mechanical Engineering, worked with several companies such as L&T, Sun Microsystem, and Yahoo! to mention. He is presently a founding member and CEO of a start-up. We wish you a great new year 2015. Till then ‘Test IT’!  

(c) Amrita Foundation