Hi! I’m Samyak Sarnayak, a software tinkerer. Outside of programming, I’m still trying to figure out life.

My current, and newfound, interest is in the field of programming languages and compiler design. However, I’m always open to learning something new in the broader field of systems programming; especially if it relates to performance optimizations, parallelism, containers or distributed systems.

Most of my projects are open sourced on my GitHub.

Reach out to me at #

  • samyak201 <AT> gmail <DOT> com
  • Twitter (I may be slow to respond here) (I may have moved on to mastodon)
  • Mastodon

More about me #

My journey with computers started when I was a kid, probably 7-8 years old, with making animations in PowerPoint. These animations were pointless 1, but I had fun and it was all that mattered. A few years later, when I was 11-12 years old, I discovered 3DRAD - a 3D game maker. It barely ran on our PC at the time, but over the years, I made quite a few games using it. 3DRAD introduced me to my first real programming language, AngelScript, that had a syntax similar to C/C++. It was also the first time I had to make sense of a library reference documentation.

The next language I came across was Java. It was mandated by school and so it wasn’t as fun, although I still played around with it. I did not do much programming the next couple of years, though I did participate in Google Code-In.

University was the place where I levelled up the most. I first learnt Python there and have been using it for a few years now. I discover new things in the language even to this day. The next language I was introduced to was C. My knowledge of C is mostly surface level as I never used it as much as other languages. Then there was the usual CS curriculum 2 of data structures, algorithms, discrete math, digital design, automata theory, etc. Outside of those, I worked on quite a few random projects and participated in many hackathons (you can find most of them in my GitHub history).

For a considerable amount of time, I was into machine learning and, more specifically, deep learning. From taking external courses and reading research papers to writing papers 3 and implementing 4 some things. Eventually, I realised I wasn’t very interested in it. There were a lot of reasons for it 5 and I don’t want to give this paragraph more space than this.

Some time in my second year, I found the Julia programming language. I was really invested in it for some time, but I slowly realized that it’s not my kind of language. At the time I wasn’t sure why I decided to learn a language out of nowhere. Now I think it’s because I want to discover and learn new languages to see the limits of what is possible with programming languages. Naturally, this led to an interest in compiler design and the course on it really helped make this stronger. As of writing this, I’m pretty new to this field but I hope to discover, learn and create a lot more.

In August 2019, I joined PES Open Source 6. I met a lot of great people there and learnt a lot about open source and beyond. Though it was a really good decision, I’m not sure why I joined PESOS as a core member then. I say that because my first real open source contribution was at least a month after joining PESOS 7 - sometime before Hacktoberfest that year. At PESOS, I started an open source project that I was serious about - browser-history. The goal was to help people get started with contributing to open source projects, using a real project that we could help first timers with. We have had over 25 contributors (some first timers) from India, Kenya, Germany, UK, Belgium and others 8. browser-history also participated in PyCon India 2020 DevSprints and was invited again the next year - helping a few people make their first open source contribution.

My time in university was abound with internships too. The first one started in November of 2019 at Deeplogick. I was skeptical at first, considering that I found their “job posting” through a WhatsApp forward. I was very nervous while I gave my very first interview, which lasted a couple of hours. They were impressed by my GitHub profile and I eventually got selected. It was a very early stage startup with only a couple of other people working on the tech side of things, but there was some good work being done. It was a fun and busy few months until the pandemic made it hard to find and talk to customers and the company had to stop operations. The next place I worked for was RuleZero - another early stage, but fast growing, startup. After that came the time of campus placements where I secured a two-month summer internship at Akamai. Through a contact from one of my previous internships, I was introduced to Chaos Genius - another early stage startup. I’m currently an intern there and will be joining as a full-time software engineer from July 2022.

So that’s where I’m at right now. I don’t know when I’ll next update this page, but I hope to learn a lot more and generally be a better version of myself the next time.

Last updated: 26th December 2021

  1. Pun intended (this was just a test to see if footnotes work xD) ↩︎

  2. Though I did pick up a few things from these courses, I was mostly very bored in classes. ↩︎

  3. I call them “papers” and not “research papers” because they had no research in them :) ↩︎

  4. Here’s a fun one: https://fashion.samyak.me/ (works entirely client side on a static site). ↩︎

  5. The uni’s course on this subject did not help at all in maintaining that interest :) ↩︎

  6. PESOS now continues to live in a different form at UniFOSS. Join us if you too are an Indian university student interested in FOSS. Also, here is a great summary of what went down at PESOS, written by the person who (re-)started it. ↩︎

  7. This was my first external (to a repo not belonging to me or my friends) PR. It was merged two years later. This one was my first useful, external PR. ↩︎

  8. Hacktoberfest (2020 and 2021) helped significantly in bringing these contributors (especially the ones outside PES). ↩︎