Sunday, October 8, 2006

Geek Time! Family Time!

So, its the Canadian thanksgiving weekend!

I had my parents in town... but you'd think God would let that in the way of a few adventures? Think again!

The summary:
- some progress in my research, yet my prof goes unrealistic again
- campus devotional goes great!
- help a guy move in a... convicting... way
- got a hold of a sister in Lausanne on Skype. Its been a while I was trying to encourage her.
- music, music, music!
- movies: Syriana, Return of the Street Fighter, Animatrix
- first lab monitoring time goes as a breeze
- API madness

Before I get started with the rest of the week, let me say I had a good time for the Thanksgiving holiday.
My folks and I had a good meal on Saturday. My mom went to church with me and we had a great buffet at Casa Corfu afterwards. Monday was a day off, and I helped a sister who's trying to get wireless internet in her business, and was well thanked for my efforts by a nice meal!
On Tuesday, I went with my mom to the Botanical Gardens' China Garden. They have, every year, 'La Magie des Lanternes', chinese lanterns all over the place, built around a given theme. This year was celebration. I'll put the pics online soon enough.

some progress in my research, yet my prof goes unrealistic again

So, I managed to work a bit with my colleague and we hammered down the biggest parts of that paper ok at this point. Obviously, we could cut 4 pages of extra English if we really got down to it, but that's not the focus now.
At our weekly meeting with our supervisor, we had once more the whole argument on how we'd specify what we had to specify, although I thought we agreed on that months ago. No big change in the end, so things are still OK.
The thing is... he wants more examples done by next week. Nevermind the fact that I need to actually research that stuff, implement it, test it, refactor it, document it, convert it, build a performance benchmark around it, etc.
The other thing he requested will be relatively easy to do, although its just gonna be time consuming.

campus devotional goes great!

So, one brother shared one of his quiet times, and we did a game to discover each other. We had to write down a secret about ourselves on a piece of paper, fold it, and put it in a basket.
Then, we all picked a name, and we had to guess who the person behind the secret was. Lots of laughter, and nice discoveries.
Also, we had a birthday cake ready for one sister's birthday.

help a guy move in a... convicting... way

Someone I met a long time ago. He calls me and asks for some last-minute help packing. It should be quick, he says, because its just a room... just need to pack his books.
I swore when I entered the room. A tiny space, covered with books, newspapers, and whatever else.
And there were a lot of books. Mostly Bibles. In all translations, in multiple copies. And it was fullllllllllllllllllllll of it!
Suffice to say that I left feeling my hands so dirty that I didn't want to open my apartment door with them and that I really really want to have a clean room and household now. As much as it is sad to say, I just don't want to be like THAT nor anywhere close to it. I know it sounds like judgment, but it really is discernment.

got a hold of a sister in Lausanne on Skype. Its been a while I was trying to encourage her

Won't say too much of it. I just find it neat that God has got me there first, so that I can be of some use to her (I hope). Maybe He wants to take our friendship for great purposes? After all, the world is a small place, and God doesn't see our role to play in it as a small one.

music, music, music!

Listened to a mix and match of the Fulda Symphony Orchestra. There are some legal CDs on the web. I'll keep you posted with that I liked.

movies: Syriana, Return of the Street Fighter, Animatrix
After the devo, we watched a part of Animatrix. I like that DVD so much! You can learn the history behind the Matrix.
I watched another tidbit of Return of the Street Fighter, which is in the public domain now. Sometimes, I just need some gore.
For my brain, with my parents, I watched Syriana, from George Clooney. Very good movie about how the US' thirst for oil is messing up the world, with political plots left and right. A lot of mixed storylines make it very interesting.

first lab monitoring time goes as a breeze

So, this week, I had my first lab monitoring time. I actually stuck in 2 sessions, because I never really stepped in the labs before and I needed to figure out how things would work out.
So I discussed a few things with a colleague, and looked upon my dear friend, sourceforge for a solution. What did I find?
Super SSH!!! Ohhhhhh yeaaaaaaaah, that's the stuff!
Now, let me give you a hint of the problem: we have about 20 computers in that room, and they all need to be configured for our students. Do I look like a guy who'd like to log into each of them to type the same boring commands?
No! My lab monitoring time is all about being paid extra to do my work... oh, and helping the students. That too
;) (kidding). But, in my non-student-helping-time, I want to learn about tools and technologies that make my resumé more attractive, read my Bible, catch up on the 10'000 things I got to do in my life. Typing the same commands 20 times over isn't on that list, you'll notice.
What's when sssh comes in handy. In no time, I was able to configure all the computers into a farm, create a SSH identity key for automatic authentication, and use sssh to configure all the computers to accept my connections WITHOUT asking for a password. OOOOOOOOOH yeah!
Thats in my toolbox. Can you tell my geek side is happy?

API madness
I had some compiling issues with AFC and thus decided to transition to uthash after looking at some APIs. I transitioned one module fine, but the second was just causing me too many problems, so I rolled back to AFC and started working a bit on the code to fix it to my liking. That's neat about Open Source software. Maybe I'll end up contributing a lot of things to that project, who knows?

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