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In Minnesota

I have an ealy appointment tomorrow, so this is all tonight.

Business Trip

When I returned from my brother’s wedding in Utah, a curious email was waiting for me. Its subject was simply “Business Trip?”

The long and short of it is that I’m headed to Minneapolis on Tuesday night, with my airfare, hotel, car, and food all paid for by Microvision. I can see, kinda, how a trip might be annoying if you have a family and all, but with no dependents of my own, I find the idea pretty appealing. I could get used to touring the world on someone else’s dime, even if I would be working while there.

Of course, maybe I should wait until it actually happens before I make up my mind about it.

Software Test Intern

Nearly 18 months into my “3-6 month” internship at Microvision, I continue to find ways to impress myself with my software testing prowess. Details must remain hazy, but let me just say that a test I developed continues to have exact correlation with a much more time-consuming test that has been used for much longer. Yet the best part of the job is the nearly constant learning opportunities that I encounter. The weeks without something to learn are very few and far between. Combined with almost limitless flexibility and a great group of people to work with, what more could I ask for? Well, other than a reverse in the trend of the stock price, hey?

All-Nighter

Stayed up all night working on my 25-page paper. It is now up to 18 pages. I think I’ll make it. It looks pretty goo so far.

Fortunately, this plethora of school/work/bike trip preparations will end soon, and I will only have one thing to worry about: pedaling.

Circuits test: 79. Not great, but not the end fo the world. I guess I’m getting a B in that class. I think that’ll be my first B from BCC. Oh well, getting out just in time I guess. I graduate this August.

I still have a personal statement to write for UW Bioengineering. Before I leave, hopefully.

Customization

One of the great things about some software packages is the immense amount of user interface and even behavioral customization one can perform on them. While not as desireable as a program that works exactly how you want it to out of the box, customization is really the only way to go when a more complex software package becomes sophisticated enough to be used for a variety of purposes. It is the only way to possibly please everyone.

I have been very impressed with the customization available in some programs recently. Just now, getting Microsoft Outlook to display messages exactly how I wanted them took a little bit of searching, but all of the customizations I wanted were available, and I am quite happy with their layout now.

Another program that has consistently impressed me with customize-ability is gVim, the graphical version of Vim for Windows. I really need to make an entire write-up on this one because I have been working at getting its layout more to my liking for several months now, making slow but very real progress. Since I use gVim extensively both at home and at work, I probably have some reconcilliation to do to make my editing experience more seamless. All that gVim needs, in my opinion, to be the perfect editor, is slightly better integration with the Windows Paradigm (ie, better knowledge of things like the user’s home directory), and real support for tabbed editing. However, even without these features, gVim is still so much better for me than the next best I’ve tried (Programmer’s Notepad and Notepad++) that it remains my preferred editor for almost all situations. Think macros, and no other editor stands a chance to Vim. And I’m certain that I’ve only scratched the surface.

Finally, the mother of all customizable music applications has been my preferred computer music player for at least a year now – FooBar2000. Check it out.

Repercussions

All choices have consequences – this is an eternal principle that cannot be overcome. While we live in a generally free society, one in which you and I are free to go where we want, talk to whom we please, seek gain with many diverse scheme, we are still not free from the consequences of our actions. This is a good thing, generally, as it encourages one to make decisions carefully. Today was one of those days where I wish I had chosen better.

It started, as it so often does, with procrastination. A paper I had due for my English class today, put off until last night. Then I found out that the CEO of the TRC was expected me at a meeting that I had not been planning on attending. Since I had a night class, I had previously been expecting to be able to write the paper after work today. However, with a meeting in the way, I decided I had to write it last night. Well, I put that off too – not getting started until well after midnight. By the time I was done, it wasn’t worth going to sleep before work. But I did anyway, and ended up missing most of work – which usually is ok, excpet today, because I missed an important meeting. So while the TRC and school were covered, I’m now feeling pretty terrible about letting down my coworkers and friends at work. I do hope they’ll be forgiving, and even more that I can learn from this mistake.

My Life in a Day

Today was a archtype of my life. I awoke, snoozed a few too many times, showered, had a pear for breakfast, threw some chili and chips in my bag and headed out. First stop was BCC, where I dropped off my homework (due Wednesday but extened though Friday at noon), then I headed to my mom’s office, where I fixed a shortcut on her desktop and was confused by a problem the fax software was having of truncating incoming faxes. I then headed North on 405 though traffic that was, as usual, never quite clogged but never moving continuously either, until the extra lane shows up after 520 and it becomes pretty clear sailing. Its amazing how much just an extra lane can do. You hear that state legislature? Less empty busses, more empty lanes. Yeah, so I got to work and then worked for a while, doing my thing, which I can only really talk about in vague, abstract terms due to NDA’s. Then I cooked the chili and ate the chips (only a pear for breakfast, remember!) Then I had a training session, but my boss and a coworker came by, so I ended up missing the first 30 minutes and decided I’d catch the next installment of the training, if there is any. Then it was noon. After doing my thing for another while, I ended up in another meeting. Meetings are strange things. You don’t get anything done in a meeting, but things don’t get done without them either, it seems. One of those mysteries I guess. Well the meeting went longer than expected, so Dave and I had to duck out to get to the TRC meeting. We arrived slighly late, had only a few technical difficulties with a video, then got down to business: driver training. We created a mock field and challenge, then gave driver teams a minute to complete it. It was an excellent way toreally drive the point home that there is not enough time to do anything fancy out on the field. Everything has to work right, reliably, the first time, or there are major problems. On the other hand, not giving up, you can get something done in 20 seconds. Then we cleaned up, got the lego league stuff into my truck, and I headed back to my mom’s office where I met my mom and dad to go to my sister’s for dinner. Traffic on 520 was terrible, but we were HOV so we managed to survive (Gregriore best not be winning this election). My sister cooks eclectic dished, but this one was quite fabulous – chicken and pasta with squash. Dessert, a cranberry cake, was also excellent. Next we started a little shopping trip – my mom has been promising me a coat since my birthday. After a short jaunt at Univeristy Village, we ended up at Eddie Bauer in Bellevue Square, where my last coast (purchased Waaaaay back in 1999) came from. They have upgraded since then, but still have a good price on a good coat, with some good additions and a few things missing from the one I have now. So we got it in yellow, which had to be ordered in, but its the only way Scott will be able to see me when I’m around him (I turn “invisible” without my current yellow coat on). Anyway, my mom paid for it; she’s great, isn’t she. Big round of applause. Yeah, then we headed out, got some jeans, and I headed to Jon’s for Dodgeball. It made me laugh a few times, and the girl was hot, but I’m glad I didn’t pay anything for it. Then I returned to my home, after midnight, and checked my email, blogged, and (maybe) did a little somehting else too, but I don’t know what that would be, since I’m not there yet.