Friday, June 17, 2011

The End of an Era

Alas, that I should live to see the end of the Powersuite! It seems that this last semester, too many of its residents graduated and there will not be enough of it left to keep it going. While its legacy will live on in the several other rooms that are "powersuite-ing," the original will be gone.

In lieu of this (and also because nothing seems to be happening on this site anymore), I have branched off and started my own blog. It's new and subject to change, but you can find it here.

Be seeing you.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

It's About DECENCY People

Over the past two weeks, I have had no fewer than three meetings canceled or moved in a way which I found unacceptable. I find these things unacceptable due to the fact that I like order in my life (despite what my desk looks like). Therefore, I am proposing the following:

THE 100x RULE:

If you EVER want to schedule a meeting with someone, take the amount of time that you think the meeting will last. Multiply that value by 100. Add that time to the current time. This is THE EARLIEST TIME that you can possibly schedule the meeting. What does this mean? For a 1-hour meeting, the earliest time that you can actually have your meeting is four days after the initial planning meeting. This give presenters a minimal time to prepare, and interviewers time to investigate the interesting questions about the presentation that they want answered. If this is not a presentation meeting, then everyone has time to do their work and know exactly what to report during the meeting, eliminating most of the awkward pauses that contain the "you go next" connotation. It is far easier to book rooms this far in advance, as well, and this would lead to far less scheduling conflicts. Secondly


If a meeting ever needs to be moved (and this should ONLY be for a cataclysmic event, such as a volcano warning on the day of the meeting in the exact vicinity of the meeting) then the meeting can only be moved by 10% of the time from the time of meeting movement to the initial meeting time. It would play out like this:

I set up a meeting on Monday for next Monday at 3 PM for a status report on Widget X, the new and improved Widget W. However, on Friday at 1PM, I find out that a portal to another dimension is going to open in the exact meeting location 15 minutes after the meeting is supposed to start. I decide that this is unacceptable. There are currently 74 hours before the meeting. I can now move the meeting by 7.4 hours in either direction. However, if I find this out on Monday morning, say at 9:30 AM, I can move the meeting by half an hour at best. Lets hope this meeting can be compressed to 45 minutes, or that the other dimension isn't so bad.

Just some thoughts at 2AM from a cranky engineer.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

They Gave Me Free Time! The Fools!

Well, now. I can't let you Fall Fest people go and have all the costume-y fun, now can I? Fortunately for me, a certain event known as Halloween occurred recently, giving me a wonderful excuse to create an outfit of my own. This combined with the large amounts of free time I acquired upon graduation resulted in my most ambitious costume to date...

Behold! General Grievous!!


Built entirely out of cardboard, clothes from GoodWill, and some bits of Velcro. It took me about two weeks of construction, and my apartment was an absolutely cluttered mess the entire time. The head was definitely the hardest part, since General Grievous's head is much narrower than mine and only half as large vertically, but it still had to fit. The chest was the next hardest part. My first attempt was so form-fitting that I couldn't get it off, and ended up having to rip it open. Just about every other piece had its own snags, and there's a distinct drop in quality with the legs as I was running out of time. I wasn't even able to finish the feet and had to just wear black shoes instead. Still, I think it turned out pretty awesome.

It was a big hit at the party, but it was a bit difficult to eat and mill around while wearing it. Also, and you may be able to see from the above picture, I had to be continually wary of the Velcro keeping the cape attached from coming undone. (A slightly disappointing aspect of the cape is that you can't see much of the upper arms or shoulder guards.)

Apparently, Grievous is also quite the ladies' man.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Copy and Paste

This post should be dedicated to the whole month of October, but I will focus on the first week for now. We can see where it goes later.

Fall Fest!
As can be seen from the picture, my outfit was a bit...

Well, mad. I was the Mad Hatter from Alice and Wonderland. G2, our awesome sister floor, decided that my life just wasn't crazy enough. They got me an awesome costume and they decided that they would all dress up to make me feel less awkward.

In the end, all the hard work payed off, with another 41/G2 joint monarchy. 41's theme this year was V for Vendetta, and I was extremely impressed with all of the work that everyone put into the construction and events. It was an excellent year.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Every meeting, in my head

It was a cold, dark night. The wind howled above the colar of my coat. Stepping inside and flinging off the few drops of rain which had landed on my shoulders, I knew immediately what was wrong. I strode with purpose for the lab. Begrudgingly, I swung open the door to reveal the usual suspects. James Frank, electrical engineer, senior. A shifty sort, but usually not dangerous. Justin Thomas, mechanical engineer, senior. Occasionally mischevious, but mostly harmless. Finally, the dreaded Richard DeBellevue. A junior bio-med, Richard had a streak that measured up to few that I have ever encountered. "Greetings, gents," I said as I entered the room. All eyes were on me, awaiting the great reveal to come. "Yo, fix it an' ged odda here," the cold reply from Mr. Thomas. "Calmly, calmly," I was nervous, but I couldn't let on. Thomas would surly sieze any chance I gave him. He was edgy tonight, moreso than usual. "Mr. Frank, what seems to be the problem?" "The voltage, it won't go over 2.5 volts without goin' all to crap." The answer came from DeBellevue. "And what makes you think that I can fix it?" My question was genuine. I had no part in this portion of the re-wiring. "Jus' DO it." Mr. Thomas again, this time visibly agitated. I turned to Mr. Frank. "We are in it this time, aren't we?" Mr. Frank and I had been partners on several previous assignments. He was bright, if occasionally nervous. All I got in reply was a sigh that could have birthed a thousand woes. "Have we checked if we are shorting anything?" I asked to no one in particular. Mr. DeBellevue expounded "Ain't no way there could be a short. The problem is all over the board, it is in EVERY LINE. Don' you get it? This is exactly what I was afraid of. We get into this and now WE WON'T GET OUT." "Cut your crap Richard" the first time Mr. Frank had spoken all evening, "I know that you tied power and signal ground together on all of these connections. I ain't gonna stay quiet about this any longer. They have to know." "This stool pidigin tellin' the truth?" asked Mr. Thomas. "Yeah, but it ain't gonna hurt nothin'. They the same voltage reference," spat DeBellevue. "Well, there you have it," I said, "Just make sure to un-tie the grounds, and you should be right as rain." I chuckled to myself. The inclement weather had made this turn of phrase more ironic than it usually was.

This is pretty much what every meeting I have looks like through my eyes.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Heart of Darkness

I think that posting this automatically makes me a terrible person.

Oh, well. The Dark Side is the fun side, after all.

The terrible thing is that people would actually want this for their pet.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Ben Franklin is METAL

As the seconds tick away for the month of July, I realized that I had not made a blog post.

To rectify this, I decided to share this small nugget with you.

And for those of you who think that this is just empty fluff, I firmly believe that this accurately captures the essence of what the Founding Fathers were trying to say.

Specifically: Ben Franklin was the most awesome bass player in history (haha) and that no man should wear black eye shadow.

Friday, July 16, 2010

It is summer!

I am surfing the blogosphere at McAlister's Deli, my favorite restaurant. I got the fabulous souvenir tea cup! I am pretty sure that everyone who knows me is aware that I love McAlister's sweet tea.

On another note, I bought Starcraft yesterday. I am good with the Protoss, but I stink with the Terran. I just played an hour and forty minute game against the computer. We used all the minerals on the map, and I killed his last building with only 6 marines left to my name. XD Needless to say, I have to get better with them. I also signed up for the Starcraft II beta, and I really want to get in. If you want to get an idea of what it's like, youtube HDstarcraft. He is a good player and gives interesting commentary. In fact, I think I am about to watch one of his games. Hey, it's summer. What else do I have to do with my time?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Let me explain... No, There is no time. Let me sum up...

All times in Post Final Final time (final final time started at 12:00 PM, Wed. May 5)

PFF + 1H 20M - Finish Final Final, feel cool brush of freedom

PFF + 2D 21H - See Roomate Graduate

PFF + 3D 1H - Leave Longview for West Chicago

PFF + 1W 6H - Buy First Car

PFF + 1W 1D 20H - Leave West Chicago for Virginia

PFF + 1W 4D 20H - Start First Engineering Job

So, a lot has happened. And the fun is only getting started...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

It's About Time

They finally got me.

After five years of actively hunting and ponding others on the floor while myself remaining immune, I was ponded under what is being dubbed "The Shrug Clause." Basically, I hadn't been ponded yet and I needed to be before I graduated.
The devious fiends got me Sunday afternoon. Of course fearing that I would be too much for them to handle under normal circumstances, they waited until right after I returned from a Chinese buffet. They didn't even let me get onto the floor, but pulled me right out of the car.
Out of one vehicle...

...and into another.

Having a stomach full of food somewhat impaired my fighting and running abilities, but I think I did a decent job.
One of the few times being tall is a bad thing.


"Not one of you's gonna survive this!"

The trucks were slow to get moving after I went in, and I managed to beat them to the stop sign and block their path. This resulted in everyone bailing out of Scorch's truck, and Treads nearly running me over with his Jeep. Back on the floor, I was able to hunt a few people down before I started feeling unwell. Just eating, struggling a lot, and getting thrown in the pond are not a good combination. Overall, though, I greatly enjoyed the whole thing. A lot of the floor was present, and it was good times all around.

...speaking of things that have taken long enough...


Five years, two majors, and, if my calculations are correct, Suma Cum Laude. Take that, engineering curriculum!

Not that it hasn't been difficult; the reason there wasn't a April post is because the last month has been madness, especially the last week.

Things due last Friday: Everything for E-Lab 3, including all minilabs, a 15-V power supply, a function generator, and a 10-W power amplifier (I didn't even get the last one done).

Things due Monday: Most everything for Senior Design, including a poster, web page, technical abstract, and Final Presentation.

Thing due Tuesday: Senior Design documentation (shudder) due at 9:00 am, after which Hopps and I drove up to Oklahoma City and back to finish signing our apartment lease for the summer.

After that, I was done, but routinely forcing myself to stay awake inadvertently caused my brain to switch into live-without-sleep apocalypse mode, and I didn't sleep Tuesday night either simply because I wasn't tired.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Another month has gone by in a flash. Both good and bad things have happened, but I am happy to say that in the long run, things have been great. Certainly, we have been blessed with good weather and good times. Day after day, I am reminded of how good God is. Each time I look at the sky or feel the warmth of the sun, I remember His power and goodness.

Finally, after weeks of watching Stargate Atlantis, I am on the last episode of the last season. Great show. Having seen it, I will start watching Stargate SG1. I know I am watching the seasons backwards, but I think I will enjoy them better this way.

Just a little while from now, the semester will be over. Knowing this, everyone here has been working very hard for finals. Lots of time has gone into projects and tests, but it is finally almost over. Most of the semester has been easy, but I have a feeling that it will get very hard, very quickly. Not many students will be playing video games and staying up all night if they want to pass now.

On an related subject, many people have been working on some really cool projects. Possibly some of the coolest things I've seen in a while. Rube Goldburg machines are complex devices that perform simple tasks in indirect ways. Some students are having a competition by making these machines. This is a video that has a rube goldburg machine, and is the music video for a song called "This Too Shall Pass."

Usually, rube goldburg machines are like that, if smaller. Very cool, right? Well, that just about raps up what I have to say. Xylophone music would be appropriate now... Yes...

Zephaniah 3:17 :
"The LORD your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing."

The March Post

Because I don't get enough sleep as it is, because I needed a 10 minute break on my birthday, and because March didn't have a post yet, I give you the March Post!

Happy birthday, me. You have somehow managed to get here, maybe you can make it another 21 years...


Anyway, in case any of you hadn't seen this, here is a guy who single-handedly won choral music.