Saturday, December 30, 2006


I have come to the conclusion that I must need to be endlessly entertained. I find breaks boring to the point of tedium, and indeed cannot wait for my return to Berkeley -- for more than one reason.

Now, with the personal statement for my URAP application done ... I must learn IDL. But that's all that remains as work for the rest of this break.

I'm counting down the days until I return.

Thursday, December 28, 2006


So, I find that I've not updated this blog in six months. Oh wow, I'm usually not *that* bad, though I do [by far] preferentially update my Livejournal, since its its nature to be more 'in the moment'. So, what has been going on since June 2006?

For about two weeks in early July, my mom, sister, and I finally went to Europe -- we ended up visiting [despite some complications] London, Paris, and Rome before returning to the states, wallets considerably lighter. The rest of the summer proper was relatively uneventful until the middle of August rolled around, which had a rather unfortunate congruence of a bad cold, a Linux [Ubuntu-style] debacle culminating in a computer crash and a seperate but simulaneous external hard drive faliure, and upon the would-be triumphant retun to Berkeley, Sara broke up with me [thankfully, the whole thing was approached very intelligently on her part and we are still close friends]. Enter the semester: a strange Music 'American Cultures' class, a Quantum class with too-high-level math, and a superb Stellar Physics class and German class. I'll avoid an arduous review of these here, since I speak at rather great length about them in my LiveJournal.

Extracurricularly, I didn't go to fencing or archery anymore, as funds prohibited. My involvement with BCR toned down a bit; I had grown tired of the drama brought about last year, and so I tried to stay close to my friends -- and close enough to be informed and to help when I could -- but I did what I could to prevent any personal drama. I think that I failed in staying properly involved, and came across instead as reclusive; but I avoided any extreme personal involvement in the drama, at least. My efforts on the BCR site still have not reached fruition, as I am having a difficult time working within the constraints of the style system while adding an second menu bar, but with luck it will be up in a few weeks [and fully HTML 4.01 Strict compliant!]. I also took the advice of Sara around the middle of October to begin looking into research. I inquired with Professor Davis, and he forwarded my request to the rest of the astro department, the end result of which is that I am going to be working with Professor Basri on Stellar Microvariability for the Kepler mission -- a search for low-mass extrasolar planets.

Of course, the first of two big things this semester has been, of course, "The Mansion", or a five bedroom house where Kit, Rob, Ben [and soon Melissa] and I live. Its been quite convenient and for the most part, rather uneventful. Having our own rooms allows us whatever degree of privacy we desire, of course, but game nights and such are rather frequent -- though our decline in Halo sessions has in large part to do with my focusing on schoolwork later in the semester. The other "Big Thing" was, of all things, the result of a Halloween costume. Long story short, I met Marya when I was dressed as Data for Halloween, and after some mutual awkwardness born of little experience, we have now been going out for roughly a month and a half.

So, lest I neglect this for another six months, what's up and coming? Well, the research of next semester, to be sure, hopefully a Spring Break with Marya down in SoCal, schoolwork, Sara will stay with us for January and possibly the summer [Well, Marya is an awesome girlfriend who appreciates and is not jealous that Sara and I are still close. And just amazingly awesome in general :-D ], and hopefully the Leadership Conference will not fall through. Perhaps more later. For now -- I depart.