Finding Thesis Work in Sweden

March 4, 2009

If you are an international master student in Sweden, it is really hard to find a thesis work nowadays. Even if you don’t want to be paid, it is still difficult to find a thesis work both in the industry and the academic world. So what should you do ?

Networking

Being a stranger in a country is difficult, if you don’t know anyone, you better meet them ! Attend events, conferences, meetings and network with the other people. If there is one thing I have learned through my master studies is that, networking is extremely important for the success. So go out and meet people, you can’t know when they will need you or you’ll need them. You can check my networking tips in Stockholm.

Muscular Fingers

It took me more than 70 NO’s before I got that YES ! I have applied to nearly 70 companies, (remember there is still economic crisis) had an interview with 4-5 of them and started my thesis work at 1 of them. Some of them required fluent Swedish, some of them wanted to start earlier and so on. So you better apply a lot of places to increase your chance.

Quick Fact : I have started looking for master thesis in the end of August 2008 and found it January 2009 :) This is the same for my peers who have found thesis works in the industry. Unfortunately it is not easy !

No Job is Small

Don’t hesitate to break your limits, you never know what will happen. For example, I even had an interview with a company in Malmö and had to travel there. One company was going to send me to China but their time schedule didn’t fit mine. So if you don’t try, you can’t meet new opportunities.

Proposals

I have a folder named “Thesis Application” and I have more than 20 proposals there that I have prepared for different companies. The companies expect you to prepare individual thesis proposals for every single of them. On the other hand as a student, you may not be sure about what you want to work with but you better spend some time on that. Be ready to prepare proposals that you will never use :)

Documents

Upgrade your CV, transcript and anything that you may need during your applications. Send them to everybody. Maybe someone who knows someone may help you.


An interview with Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz

February 2, 2009
schwartz_80x100
Name: Jonathan Schwartz
Title: CEO
Company: Sun Microsystems Inc.
Location: Santa Clara, Calif.
Best books read this year
•Empires of Light, by Jill Jonnes, “a really entertaining history of electricity, its discovery, generation and distribution around the world. Clouds — and computing, broadly — have parallels to that history.”
•The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Bigger, by Marc Levinson, “about the expansion of free trade made possible through the standardization of shipping containers, which again has a great parallel to our industry.”

•Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World, by Tracy Kidder, which “reminds you what’s truly important.”

Favorite non-work activity: Cooking and eating, with friends and family.
Philosophy in a nutshell: “The harder you work, the luckier you get.”
Fantasy dinner party guests: “Larry Ellison — I’d love to have him over. We both love databases; we’d have a lot to cover. I’d even cook. Heck, that’s probably unrealistic.”I guess I’d love to have dinner with John Maynard Keynes, Steve Martin, Alice Waters and all three of this year’s Nobel laureates in physics. Alice cooks, Steve picks the wine, we all learn about broken symmetry.”

What are you doing to help your customers with their economic problems?

We are preconfigured for the downturn. If you think about the discretionary expenses that go into operating a data center, first and foremost there’s the physical plant itself — the physical space, the power consumption, the HVAC. So all the work that we do around energy efficiency and on getting optimal performance — it’s because the environment ends up being a huge operating expense for our customers. And to the extent that we can help them lower their environmental impact, we’re also lowering the economic impact on their businesses. That’s clearly Job 1.

The second element of discretionary expense is software licensing, and probably the single biggest license that customers have to buy is [for] proprietary databases. Second on that list are proprietary application servers and an application infrastructure. I just was with a customer who didn’t recognize that he had roughly 2,000 developers working with MySQL because it wasn’t a purchase standard [in his organization] — but it had become the de facto [database] standard. He didn’t recognize that he could get that level of productivity [from an open-source database].

The same is true for the application server marketplace. OpenSolaris — now that it is multivendor and multiplatform and the source is available, those environments where you don’t need support don’t have to pay for it. And then we enable customers that want to subscribe in production environments to pay for the supported version.

With the economic downturn, do you really expect customers in the near term to, say, swap out an Oracle database and replace it with MySQL? Unquestionably. Now, that doesn’t mean they are leaving Oracle — Oracle is a fantastic company, and they’ve built a fantastic database. But there is no longer one-size-fits-all in the enterprise database marketplace.

In your blog, you talked about aggressively expanding your customer base. How does the new four-socket Sparc Enterprise T5440 help you do that? It’s a little unlikely that this server is going to be the first system that a new customer buys from Sun. I don’t want to close off that option, [but] it’s more likely that they pick up a one-socket Niagara system. Just on price point, you seldom spend $50,000 to $100,000 on your first server, and that’s the price range that these [new] systems start at.

Niagara as a whole, though, gives us access to a market that really is representative of a unique problem space. We don’t see IBM with [its System p line] at all in the Niagara space. What brings new customers to Sun is differentiation and innovation. [They] want to be 50% faster, or 50% more energy-efficient, or half the size. Those things, when added up across really large data centers, mean real money to real customers.

Sun fosters a reputation as a disruptive company, from a technology standpoint. But what will it mean to be disruptive going forward? You want to be careful. You want to be disruptive to the industry; you don’t want to be disruptive to your customers. I’ll give you a great example of the kind of disruption that the market is going to see from Sun in the next 12 months. We have been very aggressively promoting OpenSolaris in the marketplace, and there are a lot of storage vendors that have been really excited to embrace open-source operating systems — so long as they stay on servers.

As you have seen with Thumper — a 48TB storage platform based on the ZFS file system — we’re planning on taking Solaris and extending all the skills and knowledge and ecosystem that we built in our server business to our storage business. That now means open-source platforms will be at the heart of open storage as it evolves as a market category, and we plan on being a leader there. That’s very disruptive to the competition.

What role does FUD — fear, uncertainty and doubt — play in the server market these days? I’m asking this because Linux advocates don’t seem to miss an opportunity to explain why that operating system will crush Solaris at some point. How do you counter that? We don’t pay a lot of attention to that; we pay a lot of attention to customers. We are very well aligned with the Linux community. We’re not the enemy of one another — and I know there are folks who get emotional about that now and then. But our focus is going after the proprietary vendors that are causing our customers a lot of grief and a lot of pain. And the more we focus on solving those customers’ problems, the more they embrace open source.

Some people think that the current economic problems will accelerate the adoption of software-as-a-service technologies. What are your thoughts on that, and how are your products going to line up to support SaaS? Customers under stress are open to change. And that is what I see from every customer I’ve spoken to, especially [lately]. That means they are open to change in moving away from proprietary software vendors and proprietary storage vendors, more open to moving to software as a service, more open to moving to free software — and that, again, creates opportunity for Sun. I think the doors are going to be more open in the next year than they have ever been.

Where is this innovation going to come from? The fear is that investment dollars will dry up. Innovation rarely arises in a bubble. Someone clever once said that necessity is the mother of all invention, so believe me, people are becoming a lot more innovative as I speak. Why? Because they have to. If your budget just got cut 50%, I promise you, everything is on the table. There is no better time to start a company than right now. It may be tough to find funding, but there is no better time to go look at the parade of legacy technologies that need to be replaced and the extraordinary interest from customers in entertaining new ideas.

If that’s true, are you considering any changes in where your research dollars are being spent? In general, we’re looking at ways to increase R&D. That doesn’t mean across everything. It means to double down on those parts of the market that really represent clear revenue return. Coming back to the T5440 — although [the Niagara platform] is more than a billion-dollar business, you have to remember that [work on] the first silicon began in 2001. R&D takes patience, discipline and rigor. We’re not going to make changes within the quarter or within the next six months that are just going to be episodic or ephemeral changes because there was a downturn.


OSUM (Pronounced Awesome) Group

October 8, 2008

We created an OSUM group for those of you who want to connect with hundreds of student clubs (OSUMs) from around the world. You can register yourself at http://osum.sun.com/group/kthOSUM

Benefits for OSUM Members:

OSUM members will gain benefits that can help them prepare for an IT career by getting access to the latest open-source technologies including free media kits and student-developer resources. Training:

  • Hands-on training through student projects and games
  • Online training through the Sun Academic Initiative program
  • Preparation for and discounts on Sun certification3
  • OSUM activities that encourage team building

In addition, OSUM members can reap the following social benefits:

  • Global social interaction and camaraderie with other student developers
  • Opportunities to collaborate with each other on projects and activities in a fun and engaging way
  • Development of interpersonal skills
  • A better attitude about learning
  • A sense of accomplishment, with a growing sense of competency and self-esteem
  • Opportunities to get challenged, get motivated, and get excited

OSUM Elements:

The OSUM has two elements that create the organization: Physical and Virtual.

Physical: The OSUM energizes students to participate on campus in Sun’s communities through tech demos, projects, and activities based on open-source technologies and communities that Sun supports.

  • Monthly meetings
  • Typical activities
  • Student projects
  • Games
  • Guest speakers
  • Installfests
  • Open-source events
  • Face-to-face interaction with campus OSUM members

Virtual: OSUMs enables student developers to connect to each other and to Sun through a virtual social network. New OSUMs and existing student-developer groups that affiliate with the Sun OSUM program will receive free access to the OSUM web site. Benefits of this web site include the following:

  • A feature-rich social networking site that can host the web site for each individual OSUM and connect it to OSUMs and their members around the world
  • Everyday interaction with a global community of student developers

Students will be able to do the following:

  • Write blogs
  • Post comments
  • Use an instant-messaging application
  • Upload photos and videos
  • Post profiles of themselves
  • Communicate in forums

The OSUM web site allows students to participate and create the online communities. Students can create their own subgroups by technology, language, and other special interests.


Open and Free Software

February 26, 2008

photo1Today there was an event at KTH about “Open and Free Software”. The Free Software Foundation Europe,  and the Royal Institute of Technology organized a lecture with Dr. Richard Stallman.

Mainly the session was about the free software movement and the GNU/Linux operating system.

Richard Stallman spoke about the goals and philosophy of the Free Software Movement, and the status and history of the GNU operating system, which in combination with the kernel Linux is now used by tens of millions of users world-wide.

photo2Dr. Stallman is the founder of the GNU project and president of the Free Software Foundation. He has received honorary doctorates from the University of Glasgow, Free University of Brussels and Universidad Nacional de Salta. In 1990, he was the receiver of a Macarthur foundation fellowship and has been elected member of the US National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

You also watch a small video from the presentation. For the all open source events in KTH, please stay tuned. We will organize more solaris and java events very soon. Hope to see you all again.


Campus Ambassadors in Sweden

December 12, 2007

For Sun Technical forum and Developers day, all of the ambassadors in Sweden came to Stockholm last week. We had lots of interesting meeting about java, server and storage devices and Sun in universities.

After having a busy day, we were all tired and decided to enjoy a little bit. Sun Xmas party was great and we danced all together for hours.

dsc00222.jpgambassadors.jpg


Sun Campus Ambassadors to KTH !

November 16, 2007

Welcome Everyone !Gokhan Dogan

We are the new Sun Campus Ambassadors to KTH. You can see me ( Gokhan Dogan ) on the right side. I have a bachelors degree in Computer Engineering, but now I’m having my master degree in ICT Entrepreneurship at Kista Campus of KTH. I worked as a software engineer in D-Link for a year when I was in Ankara, Turkey. I was an exchange student in Finland last year and completed my final thesis with a project of Nokia where I used Java Me and M2M technologies.

Alper CelikHi everyone, I am Alper. I am a computer engineer. I have worked in several software development companies. I am a master student in KTH, I am studying ICT Entrepreneurship.I worked with Gokhan in Finland for Nokia for our graduation project. We have almost the same background with Gokhan. I like playing soccer, lets say I am a semi-professional soccer player. You can contact us anywhere and anytime. Our Sun e-mail accounts will be available very soon.

If you happen to see us anywhere in Stockholm and you have some questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can always tell us your suggestions or comments and we encourage you to do so !

We hope a very great year with full of activities those will be supported by Sun. We will talk about new great features of NetBeans, Sun Solaris and many other great tools from Sun Microsystems.

Contact Details :

Gokhan Dogan : Gokhan [dot] Dogan [at] sun [dot] com

Alper Celik : Alper [dot] Celik [at] sun [dot] com

Best Regards !


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