Student Tapaswini and her experience in Google Code-in 2019 - Liquid Galaxy project community site

Student Tapaswini and her experience in Google Code-in 2019


My name is Tapaswini Kodavanti, and I am currently a 10th grade student who recently took part in the Google Code 2019. This was my second year participating with Liquid Galaxy, and I have learned quite a bit through a hands-on approach rather than a strict teacher to student format typical in grade schools.

I started participating in Google Code In when my father had given me a text message from one of his friends saying how it was a great opportunity to hone down on STEM skills I was starting to develop. At the start, I didn’t pay much attention to the great opportunity the event had given me as I was still familiarizing myself with technology and coding, but looking back on past experiences, I can definitely say I have learned and will continue to learn so much from participating in Google Code In.

This can be because of the way the competition is set up, with students focusing on whatever skills they chose to practice with the guide of the ever-so patient mentors and other students along the way. The learning experience in its entirety was personally quiet eye-opening when I started tinkering with technologies that I was not too experienced with, such as markdown, networking, and virtualization.

At the start, I focused on tasks that combined networking and markdown, including the task series with Galaxy Pong and Galaxy Snake, games developed by mentors from Liquid Galaxy.

I was still new to the whole setup, so it took me a while to figure it out, only with the help of the mentors who patiently helped me along the way. At this point, I was able to start creating documentation on how to get the games started and I even began changing some portions of the code to alter small portions, like replacing the image of the ball in the Galaxy Pong game.

It was interesting to combine my coding skills with Liquid Galaxy in a fun way, and it actually prompted me to start developing games on my own using the Liquid Galaxy setup. Infact, next year I will be taking part in an independent study program that will focus on game development, so that will be exciting!

Later, I decided to try some of the virtual machine tasks and was able to successfully install a working Liquid Galaxy setup on only one PC. After digging through the task list, I found one that allowed me to create a demo on how I installed it using VirtualBox, an open-source virtualization software, and successfully completed that one as well.

That got me thinking on how I could start using video demos as a form of outreach to the community. Since I could post the videos online, I could record myself explaining a process or concept related to technology and STEM, and thus help out others this way.

Being someone who grew up in a strict teacher-to-student format in the classroom, GCI was like a breath of fresh air where I could learn and practice whatever skill I wanted to improve on. I think the autonomy of being able to choose your own tasks to complete gives you the motivation to learn as you work, since it is your own curiosity that makes you take on the challenge.

Lastly, thank you to all the sincere mentors and students! I learned much from you all these past few months and look forward to keep working with you all!

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