IEEE CRCE 4th best in the world

It was a golden day in the history of IEEE CRCE…IEEE student branch of Fr. Conceicao Rodrigues College of Engg.(CRCE) when our website fragnel.ac.in/IEEE bagged the 4th position at the INTERNATIONAL IEEE WEBSITE DESIGN CONTEST’2009. The IEEE-CRCE student branch received $250 and a certi for the same.
It is really amazing. It feels honoured when something u contributed to creates history & gets recognition on an international level.
Great Job Mihir!!! Standing ovation to the IEEE Student Council 2008-09 for their support & encouragement for the website. Also thanks to all others who contributed in some way or the other… It is looking like a award reception speech!…well, it is just that….hehe.
Hope the upcoming IEEE councils keep up the good work(as yet, they are doinga good job) as the expectations have gone up steeply.
But i dont know why the results are not displayed on the main IEEE website yet…

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Guest Blog:”IEEE CRCE website from scratch to podium”

“We also have our own student branch website..www.nsitonline/societies/ieee…..”
Date:28th sep,2007 Venue: DA-IICT(gandhinagar) Event: All India Student Congress 2007

It was the branch presentation session which was going on, where council members of different student branches would highlight the achievements/goals of their respective student branch in a 7-10 mins presentation. I was half asleep while listening to these presentations when someone from a college named Netaji Subhash chandra Institute of technology uttered the above mentioned line. It kinda got stuck in my mind. Well the presentations got over. the following two days were awesome too. i came back from this break to see a pile of pending work starting with PCT presentation in a week’s time…

After many days, it came back to my mind…”our own website”. Googled a bit about NSIT and found their “student branch website” (till this time..IEEE CRCE had never heard of anything like this) and man! What a detailed site that was. I expected it to be a 2-3 webpages site which gives info about the student branch, the council members etc..etc.. But this site apart from having all that had a gallery section, a ‘members only zone’, downloads of useful stuff, forums and polls. Then it suddenly struck me and the next 3 terms tht I googled threw up even bigger surprises.“IEEE SPCE”..”IEEE TSEC”..”IEEE VESIT”. It seemed like all well established student branches had their own websites!! In the time to come, i found sites of IEEE TCET,IEEE KJSCoE and many others too..Finally I searched for the term “IEEE CRCE”. It linked to an old webpage(not updated since 1998) on our college website…Though I wasn’t really surprised..simply coz we ourselves had never thought of a website..

Next thought in my mind…”why cant we have our own website”..so mailed all these links to our then vice-chairman arjun rao..and the reply that he sent confirmed (atleast in my mind) that IEEE CRCE will surely have it’s very own website during our tenure as council members. The reason why I felt it was feasible was both me and arjun had IT as the optional subject at +2 level.. so atleast a basic HTML site would have jus taken 2-3 days to build (thts wht I thought initially :P)..Now well here’s the reply..

“Man….wat a site yaar…v r in stone age compared 2 d SP guyz….****…..dude….v need 2 upgrade our site as fast as possible and atleast make it remotely similar 2 SP ka site ….I will dedicate myself completely with urself and abhishek 2 get a top class site…pratik and d council can get d remainin things done and obviously v will help dem out….d thing is if v do stuff like dis now it will help IEEE in d future….d previous guyz dint do nething for the IEEE,,,lets change all dat now…..
Tc
AJ”

Again a few days passed, with assignments, midterms, submissions, project presentation, PCT presentation..Meanwhile I did discuss the idea of the site with abhishek(who’d later become a major decision maker in the site building process).Though abhishek didn’t know HTML..he had a keen interest in the site..

So finally, we started with making the website in the PL. Initially we had a startup version on googlepages… as it was easy..just uploaded the content..thats it. But it was not at all worth seeing & not much customizable. Then we decided to upload a site on college’s web domain.

It took us quite a bit time to come up with a site which could be uploaded..(a lot actually..compared to the initial estimate of 2-3 days!!).After a few formalities and a lot of assurances the site was finally uploaded by the Site In-charge of our college website in a week’s time..(all of these happening in our sixth semester)..and I still remember the day it was uploaded..Swapnali mam came to the lab where my practicals were going on jus to inform that the site had been uploaded..me and pratik went to the internet centre after the prax and saw the website..All that I felt at tht moment was a sense of satisfaction..atleast now we had a updated website..or rather..”our very own website”..This blog provides too small a space to describe all the ups and downs, all the problems and all the fun that we had while making this website..but we were still not finished.. we missed the last date of participating in the R-10 website contest 2008..

New semester, we entered in our final year and at the same time a new council got elected in IEEE CRCE…Looking at the current status of the site…and our urge to build a better site..I was assigned the post of webmaster and abhishek became the technical advisor. Meanwhile before the sem began, I stumbled upon a magic wand..”jQuery” (well everything visually pleasing in the current website is jQuery..thats the only definition I can give u without sounding technical..!)I showed a few jQuery effects to abhishek and he was equally impressed.(actually a bit more than me..:) )..So well..the roadmap to our new site was ready..have an awesome looking site with as many jQuery effects as possible..

Then we tried around 12-13 versions of the index page…with ideas ranging from as wild as a “Green site”..promoting ‘Go Green’ theme…then an entire blue version(which we called “BP”)…one colorful version with all the colors of the rainbow..a B&W version… & many many others.

This new site took another 3-4 months to complete. It wasn’t easy at all. Our only source of getting information was from other web designing sites, online tutorials and blogs. Sometimes it got so frustrating that I felt like giving up the idea of a new site..but abhishek held on and also provided me with enough motivation to continue(thanks a ton for that buddy ). We learned a lottt of new things in the process..Issues like browser compatibility became a common discussion point between me and abhishek…We were now able to appreciate a well designed web page…Finally at the end of all this..we got a decent site ready… something which can be termed as a proper website..we showed it to our council members and they seemed to be very happy with the results..Again a few formalities later, this site was uploaded..and that was it..after more than 15 months we had IEEE CRCE student branch website..We filled up the form for our participation in R-10 website contest and both me and abhishek felt that we had completed our job.

Cut to May 22,2009..time 10.20pm or so..The chairman of the current council,vivek agarwal calls me up and says we hav won THIRD PRIZE in the website contest..!!!!!!!!!!!!..it didn’t immediately sink in..but vivek told me that we had got a mail from Mini Thomas mam (R10 SAC Chair)..I felt like life came a full circle..It was Mini mam who had told us during the AISC meet to participate in the various competitions orgarnised by IEEE. Immediately called up arjun and abhishek to share this news..Soon started getting congratulatory calls and messages and it felt realllly nice..:D(though I sincerely feel that the whole council was involved and it wasn’t me alone..) We finally completed the task which we had set out to do 15 months back..to have a proper website for IEEE CRCE..well now..it was even recognized by the region-10..:)..Alongwith the recognition ..IEEE CRCE student branch will also get 200$ and certificates..:)

Now when I look back…there’s jus content in my heart…those sleepless nights spent coding in DreamWeaver and listening to music playing in the background…completing webpages jus a few hours before midterms..all of that paid off big time..If someone tells me to design the same site again..i don’t think I would ever be able to do it again..in fact am still amazed…how on earth did we manage to write so much of code..hehe.

– Mihir Shah
Webmaster, IEEE CRCE,
http://frcrce.ac.in/IEEE