Our Cold Dig

Pictures are worth a thousand (swear) words

Even though we’ve spent the better part of the last week digging ourselves out of the mess that was Snowmageddon 2010 (I stil contend it is the angry, unloved twin of the Blizzard of 1993, or Storm of the Century as it was known outside Atlanta), and even though we’ve had a record three straight days off from classes, my work has not slowed in the least. As a matter of fact, it’s given me an opportunity to shed all the busy-ness of my daily life and stare straight into the horrifyingly uncovered eyes of Just How Far I’m Actually Behind.

Joyous. By the way, it’s ridiculously difficult to walk around in two feet of snow. Random factoid, thank you.

I do want to mention a few things before I leave for the weekend (I’ll come back to that after) that have come up recently.

  • MW CMS. No, the project is not dead, in spite of what may seem like evidence to the contrary. The reason the project has halted ever since fall 2009 is explained in the comments of my previous entry between myself and Eksith; essentially, I implemented something that already existed. No good. Plus, my goal was never to implement a framework anyway; I wanted to create a true content management system. Easy to install, easy to use, lightweight and flexible, excellent for small-to-medium sized websites. I already have more ideas and am beginning to sketch out a different architecture, so there is administrative progress being made already for its “rebirth”, as it were. The coding aspect of this project, however, is on hold for the moment while I focus on graduating and getting accepted to PhD programs. 😛
  • Speaking of graduating, I am applying to be the student Commencement speaker come May 16. I already have a rough draft of my speech and am working on the next draft, which I will submit tomorrow as part of my official application. I’ll be competing for the position with roughly 30 other students, and I’ll be sure to keep everyone updated as to what the ultimate decision is.
  • As for what’s keeping me busy lately, my thesis research has spun into a higher gear than I could have imagined, and it is quite literally taking up any and all spare time I have (hence, no time for programming on MWCMS). I’ve found my footing in the development process, but the actual product we’re shooting for is literally something that’s never been done before, so there’s no precedent (welcome to research!). I’ve been kicking ass, but have been getting my ass kicked at least as hard in return. I’m a good developer/researcher, but I’m not anywhere close to a great one (yet, hopefully). The PhD student I work for is a phenomenal team lead and I’m learning a ton from him as I continue to make progress, particularly since he’s giving me the reins (he has his own research to look after). Plus we’re the only two developers on the whole project. 😛
  • Is anyone else as royally furious about this as I am?

Now, regarding this weekend: I’m off to UVA in the wee hours of the morning to pay my first PhD visit! Thus far I have also been invited to CMU’s Biology and Computational Biology programs’ visitation weekends, which I will also be attending (though they won’t have to worry about reimbursing travel expenses!). UVA has already accepted me (WAHOOOOOOOO!!!), and UNC Chapel Hill and Cornell (the  latter as of today, in fact) have already turned me down. Thus, I’m waiting on decisions from CMU’s Biology, Computational Biology, and Computer Science programs, in addition to MIT and Princeton.

Additionally, I have an unofficial job offer from the Army Core of Engineers research station in Boston, and am continuing to apply for other positions (I’m particularly eyeballing MIT Lincoln Labs). Everyone please keep your fingers crossed! The next few months will determine what I’ll be doing for the next several years of my life. No pressure! 😛

In conclusion, rather than a lolcat, I just have to provide these fabulous links: is Wolfram Alpha actually Skynet, and z0mg teh Google bus is being attacked by viking frogmen!!11


About Shannon Quinn

Oh hai!
This entry was posted in Academics, Graduate School, Programming, Real Life and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Our Cold Dig

  1. halfsmile says:

    ExCUSE me?? You didn’t tell me you had an unofficial job offer!

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