Hey guys! I live in Doha, Qatar. I'm from India, my dad and mom work here. I go to an Indian school here, following the CBSE board. I'm in 11th class (or grade, or whatever you want to call it) now. I generally get good grades in school, and my teachers are happy with that. In my free time, I play the indian tabla, and most importantly, I write computer programs. I've been doing this since I was 10, and I'm extremely interested in it. I mostly work on things related to video games, and as of now I'm working on a sequel to a previous game of mine, called 'GraLL'. You can check out more of what I've done until now on the projects page of my website, which also has a blog (the 'Log' link to the right):- http://nikki93.github.com/projects.html" [Broken] My GitHub page, with my latest code projects, is here:- http://github.com/nikki93" [Broken] I've just written my CBSE board exams, and received the results. I got a total of 90.2%, which is fine, but I'm not happy with it (actually, I really don't care about it much, but friends and parents expected me to top my school, which I didn't). I'm worried that my results are being brought down because I concentrate too much on computer programming and reading more about 'higher level' math and physics which I find an interest in. If I just stick to school, I can get much better grades. I keep thinking of dropping the whole 'do what you want to do, be creative' idea and just sticking with school, but I just can't ever imagine leaving work on GraLL 2 (or whatever I'm working on at the moment) and just doing school work. It seems pointless, and cheap, as the main reason I seem to have to do it is to 'get a job', whereas programming is something I do 'because I find it fun and it's what I "feel" I should do in life'. I want to ask you guys, have you faced a similar problem? What should I do? Do school grades matter? Is pursuing your interest a good thing? Also, my mom and dad (and almost the whole of the rest of my family) want me to get into a 'good' university, for whatever reason. I myself want to do so, because I hope to meet people with similar interests as mine and develop a team. 'MIT', 'Carnegie Mellon', and 'Stanford' are names that pop up frequently in the discussion. Does working on your own projects help in getting into those? And my post might be a bit harsh, I /just/ had a little tiff with my parents and am a bit frustrated. :-) Also, if it's immature, do excuse me, I'm young and inexperienced. ps. Are avatars not allowed on this forum? ps 2. By 'programming' I don't mean just computer programming actually, but everything related to algorithms and problem solving methodology, especially that in computer games which involves a lot of physics, geometry etc.