Sunday, May 15, 2005

On a more positive note

And now for something completely different...

0. (Yes, I just thought of something I wanted at the top and I'm too lazy to renumber. Computer scientists usually do start counting from 0, but I'm not going to pretend that I was that smart this morning.)

My cousin Leah graduated from A&M yesterday with her Master's an Bachelor's in Accounting. For those keeping score at home that is the third of my cousins to start school and graduate from here before me. She even got two degrees. The fourth cousin will be starting A&M in the fall. If I don't beat her out then something is wrong and you can all ridicule me for it... assuming you don't already ridicule me for being here for 10 years.

1. The semester and my class are over. I got my A. No incomplete this time around.

2. We went to see Marsha Ball at the Starlight Music Series last night. A gorgeous evening to sit outside, have a picnic, and listen to good music.

3. Lidia managed to guess her mother's day gift in advance. Her birthday gift a few weeks before was the first gift she didn't guess or find in 30 seconds when given a chance to look. She did still manage to harass me enough to give the gift to her early.

4. Lidia and Ana are both doing fine. The baby has really grown in the last few weeks and her moving now is keeping Lidia up a little at night. Only 4.5 weeks until the due date. We're only a two weeks from the baby being considered full term. The baby can come anytime after Lidia's appointment on the 24th and they'll deliver the baby instead of trying to stop labor. We're getting so close!

5. While things have wrapped up a little for me and slowed down this weekend at least -- the next can of worms was opened last Thursday and I'll tackle it tomorrow -- Lidia is still studying for her qualifying exams for the math PhD program. She was accepted earlier this semester and has been studying hard since last fall. The tests are May 26 and 27. Hopefully the baby will give her mommy a break and at least wait until after the tests to come. We'll keep her and love her whenever she does decide its time though.

6. The Ags play Baylor today at 2. I don't have my Sunday meeting because the profs are all busy grading and will all be going out of town tomorrow. It is going to be a beautiful afternoon at Olsen Field!

Two years and holding

The semester and another school year are over. In a couple weeks the class of '09 will start arriving for their new student conferences. I'm still here.

The Computer Science department instituted an annual PhD evaluation process last year. I'll leave my political commentary on the process out of this since none of the readers care about CS department conspiracies. The process is a good thing and I've seen it used successfully in scholarship programs, period.

As I filled out my evaluation form this year -- The process includes submissions by each student and their advisor. The submissions are reviewed by the tenured faculty. -- I was disappointed in some of my responses.

1. Have you completed your proposal defense? No.
2. When did you, or do you plan to, complete your proposal defense? Fall 2005
3. When do you plan to defend your dissertation? Fall 2007
4. When do you plan to graduate? December 2007

I noted when I started this blog that I wanted to defend my proposal this spring when my advisor returned from sabbatical. Due to a number of research (re)designs, paper deadlines, and three conferences in short order that hasn't happened. My dissertation topic has finally been generally agreed upon by my advisor and I, but that isn't all that I wanted to get done.

Here's to me hopefully having a productive summer and getting my proposal done earlier than I plan on now. Until it is defended the countdown to graduation is reset and suspended to T minus two years and holding.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

The end is in sight

It is the day after the official end of the semester and my semester still isn't over. That is pretty much the way this spring has gone. So much to do and so little time to do it... so why not post something on your blog to put it all off for a couple more minutes.

I wrapped up a conference here yesterday on Nuclear Particle Transport. For more details on the program check out the webpage. If you're not reading this until late in the afternoon today I should have PDFs and html of the talks given online if you have insomnia and need some bedtime reading. My presentation went well and my advisors were both very happy with it. Always a good thing when the profs are happy with you.

The first thing to do today is finish my final project report for my course. It was due yesterday, and is over the same work my presentation was. The prof has been kind enough to give me an extension until Friday to write things up. Very nice, but some flexibility is to be expected when the work for the class project is something others will use instead of some standalone code that is discarded after the grade has been assigned. Time to get to it.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Sweet Ride

CNN has the story of a self-stabalizing bike that recently won the 9th International Bicycle Design Competition. A pretty sweet ride in my opinion.

Hopefully the bike will make its way into the U.S. market and in a couple years I'll be able to buy Ana one for her first set of wheels.