This distance education thing

Okay, technically, I’m not enrolled in the distance education program at school, but I’ve still got access to all the video recordings! I used to think that distance education was bullshit and that interactivity is essential to learning. I’m calling bullshit on myself. Well, just partially. If I were doing research this semester then there’s a good reason to be at school. Clearly these things are contextual.

I’ve been to grad school enough times to learn a thing or two. Distilled, I’ve learned that I just want to learn some stuff and then get on with my life. USC has taught me that my life is precious and that I should maximize my life expectancy by not hanging around school so much. A mugging happened on the same block a half hour after we left to look at the golden retriever puppy.

So I did some shower analysis and came up with this.

Over the past few semesters, I’ve identified that the cost of switching into school-mode and chill-out mode is insanely high. I waste so much time walking to and from classes or falling asleep in the 2nd hour of my 3 hour lecture (lol USC). Sometimes I go over to Ivan’s and then fall asleep on the floor. A gigantic portion of my day is just not productive, simply because poor scheduling divides my waking hours into too many disjoint partitions. Armed with this afterthought, I’ve opted to just stay at home and 9-5 this this semester. I wake up in the morning and just work. And it’s been good.

Thus far, I’m up to date with my lectures, eat all my meals, caught up with my friends, chit-chatted with my neighbors, and get my exercise in. All evidence is suggesting that the best way to do school is to not be at school.

I’ll report back on this topic in a week.


Disney Imagineering

I went to this tech-talk thing today and was pleasantly surprised by some of the cool things the engineers at Disney do at the park. Did you know that they have trackless rides that randomly generate paths for each run, in real-time?

They’ve got these things up at the park in Tokyo. The first of its kind state-side is opening up soon in Cars Land as Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters.

Gonna have to watch the movies and finally go to California Adventures.

Career Fair

Today I attended the Viterbi Career Fair here at USC. I didn’t have class today so I had the time to spend the whole day there, from start to finish. In that amount of time I saw a total of 5 companies. So at a rate of 1 company/hour, I can’t say this was the most effective use of my time, though the ROI on this if I were to get hired would make it all worth it.

I could’ve applied to all 5 companies online in 10 minutes. Which got me thinking about what it must feel to be on the other side of the table. As a recruiter, the prospect of shaking hundreds of hands and reviewing just as many resumes seems like such an unreasonable task. I wonder how effective these on-campus events are for both companies and students.

Big week!

After finishing that MSFE degree, I thought that there’d be no way in hell I’d go back to school again. Then I promptly forgot how stressful studying for midterms were and wound up back in school a year an a half later. It’s for the best I suppose. Perhaps my interests are finally lining up or I’m just delusional, but this is the first time in a while that I’ve been excited to get to work.

Either way, I believe I passed that algorithms exam with a score = Ω(1). I hope this means what I think it means. Or it could just be very self-incriminating evidence that I don’t know what I’m talking about.

HackSC 2015 is coming up. I’ve signed up and hope to participate in my first hackathon. I’ve got an idea going in already as an “easy” thing to do. In my experience, anything that is “easy” and can be done in X amount of time should actually be expected to be completed in at least quadruple the time. I think I’ll have a crack at retrying my last app. I think I’ll name it after its inspiration this time and call it Blackout Ben.