Otkrist Gupta, a fellow Camera Culture alum, remembers Aydin as a valued friend and inspiring colleague:
“The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long—and you have burned so very, very brightly, Aydin.”
I met Aydin in my second year at the Media Lab. I was truly surprised by his brilliance and accomplishments, at such a young age. Aydin was a self-made man; he had worked on voice recognition, AI technology, and some of his inventions were used in products such as Siri.
Even though he was a successful entrepreneur, Aydin chose to come to MIT to learn and expand his horizons. And so we began to work together on a project called “Angled Graphs,” which later became his thesis.
But I think it wasn't his accomplishments or his academic merit which made him truly unique—it was his approach towards life. It completely changed how I looked at my own life. Aydin stood for following our dreams and living our life to the fullest. He was a true friend, a great person to hang out with, and a lot of fun to have random adventures with!
Even though I overlapped with him for only a year, he left an everlasting imprint on my life. In his final days I am grateful that I was able to connect with him once more. Even though it was hard on him physically, he responded to me, and we talked about life and about books—a conversation that will always stay with me. Those who touch our lives stay in our hearts, and I will forever be inspired by the values that he stood for of friendship, joy and achievement.