BITS Goa witnessed the 13th edition of Quark, ‘Cognitive Overdrive’, from 1st Feb 2019 to 3rd Feb 2019. The three days were packed with events, guest lectures, workshops and Aurora nights. Though most of the fests signify a break from academic work for an average BITSian after the first year, the months of hard work that goes into making the fest was visible, more so as it had to follow skepticism of the administration after the events of the last two fests.

The substantial losses inccurred by fest committees of the preceding two fests and the controversies that surrounded them, added to the difficulties of the Quark organizers. The techno-managerial fest already suffers from the lukewarm enthusiasm of the BITS students and a visible lack of technical culture in the campus. But fortunately, the continuous and overwhelming support from the CSA and the earnest efforts of most of the departments involved, resulted in numerous memorable additions in this edition of Quark that made it remarkable and indeed, the fest stood out among the recent fests hosted by BITS Goa.

The lineup for the Guest lectures and Aurora nights was exceptional and multi-dimensional; consisting of a number of accomplished dignitaries who delivered inspiring lectures about their field of excellence and many interesting and underrated artists. The participation exceeded pre-fest predictions and as a result, most events as well as workshops, observed a substantial increase in the participation from last edition. The spectacular Robowars’ arena erected in front of the B-Dome made it an extravagant event, with the finals pulling a massive crowd. Screening the Matka finals in auditorium was another initiative that received a great response from the audience.

But, similar to almost every good superhero movie being burdened by an unsatisfactory third act, no college fest can escape the dissatisfaction of students of BITS Goa and of course Quark’19 was no exception! While speculations about certain clubs and departments not being allowed to conduct their events due to miscellaneous budgetary limitations were doing the rounds, the accident near the Robowars’ arena also caused a stir, though no injury was sustained by any of the participants…and even after a month and a half, there are some students who have not received their fest T-shirts.

Nevertheless, the fest was indeed an unforgettable experience. We, at DoJMA, consider ourselves fortunate for the opportunity to interact with numerous speakers and artists that graced the fest with their inspiring words and breathtaking performances respectively. Along with a brief coverage of the three-day relief from academic activities in ‘Summing It Up’, the Quark Issue includes interviews of several speakers and artists.

While Aloknath De, the CTO of Samsung India, talked about the innovations Samsung brings to its designs in order to cater to the requirements of its Indian customers, the differences between the skills of Indian talent and their foreign counterparts, adapting with the competition in the phone market and more in his interview; Mahesh Raghvan and Co., talked about Marghazi Reloaded, unconventional career choices, and the various innovative projects they undertook in their journey with music. Karan Singh, the psychological illusionist, shared his experience about performing for various Bollywood celebrities, the journey of overcoming his stage fright and the stereotype attached with the term ‘magician’.

Avdhesh Singh, a senior officer of Indian Revenue Service and one of the top five most followed writers on Quora, talked about the safety of bureaucrats, face-offs with politicians, his books and Aadhaar. Salil Shetty, a human rights activist, shared his experience about working as the secretary general of Amnesty International, the refugee crisis and much more.

In his conversation with DoJMA, Dilip Chhabria, the founder of DC Design, spoke about his passion for automobile design, some of his popular designs and the evolving technology in the automobile design industry. Dhruv Adhia, CTO and co-founder of H+ Technology, elaborated on the mixed reality in movies, AI technology and potential benefits of holograms in medical care. In the concluding interview of the fest, João Rosário, one of the partners in the DJ duo KEVU, spoke about his journey with music, his international performances, the 25-day Asia tour and the plight of being a father whose job requires him to travel excessively.

Quark has always been an interviewer’s delight as there is a wide range of dignitaries that visit the campus during the three phenomenal days and we get to acquaint ourselves with many interesting stories and innovations. We hope you enjoy reading the issue as much as we enjoyed compiling it.