Puzzle Meet Up @ Bangalore on 31st May, 2015

Let me share my experience in 1st Puzzle Meetup in Bangalore on 31st May 2015 @ RMZ Infinity, Old Madras Road. In fact, this was the 2nd meeting of such kind in Bangalore. The first time we met to solve puzzles was more than 4 years back when many puzzlers in Bangalore met @ my home to solve an LMI Puzzle test offline.  Yesterday's Puzzle meeting in fact was more than just solving puzzles.
This meeting was attended by 10 Puzzle enthusiasts Amit Sowani, Deb Mohanty, Aditi Seshadri, Prasanna Seshadri, Harmeet Singh, Rohan Rao, Sai Karthik Burra, Gaurav K. Jain, Rishi Puri, and myself. Karthik and Aditi are newcomers to the puzzle world and the youngest ones who attended this meet while Rishi specially traveled from  Hyderabad to Bangalore. Below is one of the pictures we took once the meeting was over. Aditi Seshadri and Amit are missing in this picture as Aditi left early and Amit clicked this photograph.

Puzzle Meet Up @ Bangalore on 31st May, 2015
L to R: Prasanna Seshadri, Gaurav K. Jain, Rajesh Kumar, Rohan Rao, Sai Karthik Burra, Deb Mohanty, Rishi Puri, Harmeet Singh

Before this meeting started, my expectations from the meeting were that we would try to solve the puzzles that someone is not able to solve and try to find the logical path to tough problems. However, this meeting turned out to be more than just solving puzzles. 
The meeting starts with solving the tough problems. I was having printouts of many puzzles that I was not able to solve logically. One of my favorite ones was a big Slitherlink puzzle which I was not able to open this puzzle logically. Prasanna helped me to proceed with this puzzle. While we all were busy helping each other Amit announced that we were going to solve one Team round. So we were divided into two teams. On one team it was Rishi, Rohan, Aditi, Harmeet, and Deb, and on another team, we were Prasanna, Gaurav, Karthik, Amit, and myself. Both the teams were a good mix of experienced as well as new players. We were given a team puzzle consisting of four Sudoku puzzles linked to each other. In this puzzle, good Team efforts were required to solve this puzzle completely. The time given to solve this full puzzle was 45 minutes. As there were 4 Sudoku puzzles Gaurav, Prasanna, Karthik and I took one Sudoku to solve while Amit took the hard part of co-coordinating among team members and helping each one of us. Without revealing much about this puzzle I will say that this was a very enjoyable exercise and good learning solving puzzles as a team. Fortunately, after recovering from a few initial errors our team was able to solve this puzzle completely well within the allocated time. 
The next agenda for the meeting was learning to create puzzles. Among 10 of us, there were 4 people who had never created a puzzle in their life while the other 6 had experience in creating puzzles. So each experienced person clubbed with the newcomer to make 5 teams of 2 people. In fact, two experienced played Amit and Rishi clubbed together to create something big/good. Each team was given one Sudoku type to create. Here again, I will not reveal much about the Sudoku types created by us as many puzzles created during this meet may appear in one of the forthcoming LMI Puzzle/Sudoku tests. I teamed up with Harmeet to create a puzzle. It was a great experience working with him to create some Sudoku puzzles. In the end, Harmeet was able to create one good Sudoku puzzle and I am hoping that in we will soon see more puzzles created by Harmeet in the future. Similar was the case with other newcomers. I am sure that now we will have some new puzzle creators coming from Bangalore. 
We planned this meeting for 3 hours (from 2pm to 5pm) but nobody realized that it was around 6pm now and time to go home. We ended this session by discussing forthcoming tests @ LMI and taking the feedback for future meetings. So if the feedback received is as below
1. Team Rounds were very enjoyable. We plan to continue with the team rounds in future meetings.
2. Creating Puzzles again was a great idea which will be continued in future meetings. However empty grid needs to be brought to the meeting which will help in creating puzzles. 
3. The venue of the meeting looked good and will continue until we have a better place.
4. The time of the meeting was discussed. The date and time need to be communicated well in advance of 2 weeks so that anyone attending the meeting can plan better.
We are hoping to have met every month in Bangalore and hopefully, it will happen in other cities also. Looking forward to meeting all the puzzle friends in Bangalore at the next meet in June 2015.
I tried to post most of the information which I remembered. However, I may have missed many things. If someone who attended this meeting is reading this, please do post your comments about this meeting.


swaroop guggilam said...

Very enthusiastic
Looking forward for next meet, will try if possible to attend.

kishy said...

Interesting post-meeting writeup!Thanks for the detailed follow up.By the way,which team completed the Team round of 45 mins first? :-p .Without being too harsh on others,I predict that the Team comprising the deadly duo of Rishi-Rohan would have completed ahead of Pras' Team ?! :)


Rajesh Kumar said...

In fact it was Prasanna's Team which completed this round. Other team was not able to complete this team round.

Rajesh Kumar said...

It will be great to have you in the next meeting. It will be great to see such meetings happening in other cities also.