terriko: I am a serious academic (Twlight Sparkle looking confused) (Serious Academic)
For those who haven't already heard via twitter, the defence on Friday went well, and I passed with minor revisions. Aside from some technical problems with the video conference for my external committee member, it went smoothly.

Technically I don't think you get to call me Dr. until the final paperwork is in, including the final printed copies of my thesis, but I'm expecting to finish the revisions today and get the paperwork done tomorrow so it won't be long now.

I'm not a huge fan of having to use a title at all, but I've always hated Ms,/Miss, so I will indeed be using Dr. as my title when the situation warrants. Obviously I've earned it, but I'm also absurdly amused by the resulting near gender-neutrality of my name. I expect many hilarious incidents where I get to break people's assumptions. But probably the only time any of you would ever use it is if you were sending me a wedding invitation or wanted to mess with someone's head. Including mine... in my head, Dr. O is my father, and it may take a bit of adjustment to get myself to answer to it!

So... what's on my to do list?

- The movers came and took my stuff out of my sister's basement this morning. I don't even have an ETA for when I'll get an ETA, but presumably my stuff will show up eventually!

- Lunch with Ken shortly. Dinner with the McKay's.

- I wanted to donate blood, which might have to happen this afternoon if it happens at all. This might make re-adapting to altitude harder, but I might also still have juicy extra red blood cells from my month in abq, and I figure it's better to donate than have them just all reabsorb.

- I still have revisions and paperwork to do at the university, so I'll be there tomorrow.

- Dinner with my family and possibly band before I head to my grandmother's for dessert. I know, I'm not in the band anymore, but they've got this great lineup of movie music for an upcoming concert and it's fun to sit in!

- I decided to leave my guitar with my parents so that I won't have to deal with the logistics of flying with it *and* the camera equipment I left behind last time. I'll just have to focus on clarinet 'till I decide to buy a replacement guitar. I could use one more suited to my size, anyhow.

- I head back on Thursday and I'm pretty much all booked 'till then, so if I didn't get to see you this trip, I'm sorry! I'll be back in December for the holidays.


Oct. 13th, 2011 12:18 am
terriko: I am a serious academic (Twlight Sparkle looking confused) (Serious Academic)
- My defence is on Friday.

- Slides got sent off today. I am more happy with them than I was yesterday, and think I will do a good presentation despite having to reign in my usual style to appear "more academic" for the one committee member who cared about such appearances. I think I made even my wordier slides reasonably useful, and there's still lots of visual descriptions.

- Amusingly, I now have a student card that is valid through 2015. (Mine had expired 'cause I took more than 4 years to complete my degree, and new ones are also valid for 4 years.)

- I kinda dislike most of what the Canadian Federation of Students does with my money, but they *are* lobbying against our stupid copyright legislation, which may be the most awesome campaign I've ever seen them run.

- I'm worried my movers are going to cancel on me, as they have just changed my moving date again. Ugh.

- My pseudonymous artist persona gained a bunch of followers/fans/friends overnight, and I've been tickled pink about all the nice comments people left. Yeay!
terriko: I am a serious academic (Twlight Sparkle looking confused) (Serious Academic)
I submitted my thesis!

My defence date is set for October 14th at 9:30am, which is going to hurt a little since I'm currently 2h shifted, but I'll have been back for a week then so I should have time to adjust.

I have a computer at work! And access to stuff on other systems! And things to learn! And have already been watching totally inappropriate videos with my new labmates and got invited to play League of Legends with them once I have it set up. ;)

And then I came home, had dinner, and wrote about my little ponies. Learn about how My Little Ponies helped me make my first "videogame" and then read the interview with Lauren Faust to find out how Michael Bay helped bring us a show for girls worth watching (wait, what?):

OMG, Ponies! (Or… my love affair with My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic)

I always thought my friend Sarah summed up the appeal of My Little Pony the best:

Once you believe in rainbow-coloured ponies who can talk, there isn’t much limit to your imagination.

PS - for those who haven't been reading my private posts, take special note of my new "Serious Academic" icon. ;)

PPS - I may be more myself again with a break in the thesis grind.

PPPS - Also, I might have internet at home come Monday! And John might manage to visit! Everything is awesome!
terriko: (Default)
The job: Postdoc at the University of New Mexico

I'm going to be starting a postdoc at the University of New Mexico this fall.

I was fortunate enough to have some great interviews and offers, but I chose UNM because I was guaranteed to be doing the sort of research I find most interesting there, and because the people are fantastic. It was actually the only place where I got much chance to meet my prospective colleagues so I know I'm joining a very interesting team of biologists, software engineers and security folk. Part of my job will involve being the glue between the 4 teams, so I'm likely going to work with a lot of different people on a regular basis!

One of the researchers compared the project to skynet, and it's actually disturbingly apt, although thus far without the homicidal AI. Maybe that's where I come in? More seriously, I'll be working on biologically-inspired artificial life / computer immunology for security applications. Their early results are insanely promising, and I'm really excited about working in a space where no one will be fazed by my use of biological metaphors for things. (I was raised by wolves biologists, recall.)

And yes, for those of you who heard about some of my other contract negotiations: this postdoc does mean that I'll be able to continue working in open source and more specifically that I'll be able to continue working on Mailman. I'm all excited about doing some informal user testing on the work our Summer of Code students have produced, so expect to see me asking for help with that once I'm settled.

The move: Albuquerque, NM

John and I were down house hunting this past week, and have secured the most beautiful apartment for Sept 1st. I wish I'd taken pictures to show you; it's really gorgeous with high ceilings, this nifty kitchen, and even a hammock in the backyard. The landlords actually knew and could name their neighbours, which makes me feel better about the neighbourhood, and it'll be an easy bike ride in to the university which alleviates my need to buy a car right away. It'll be just me there for at least the first few months, but there's enough space for John to move in later. There is also a full guest bedroom, so please consider coming to visit!

Moving is... going to be a pain. The quotes I've got today run $5-6.5k, and I've been allotted a $1.5k moving allowance. The cheap quote is from PODS, assuming I move a 8x8x16 pod which they recommend for a 2-bedroom, but I may phone them again for the 8x7x7 sized quote since I'm planning on leaving a lot of my furniture behind. Currently planning on taking my bed, a couple of the good bookshelves, clothes, kitchenalia, and a few boxes of books. It may make more sense to ditch the bed and just ship small boxes, though; we'll see. Moving recommendations appreciated.

The thesis

Is not yet complete -- my supervisor just got back from a family event last night and is back to editing today, so I'll be back to revisions later this evening. I really hope this can be done soon!
terriko: (Default)
You probably got the impression from my last post that I was kinda irked with my PhD supervisor.

What you may be more surprised to hear is that I had actually told him this in an email before the blog post went up. And here's where the awesome part comes in: he's actually modified his editing style to make the revision process easier and less stressful for me going forwards, even though it's resulting in more work for him.

I often talk about how the best part of my job is working with smart, creative people... but this week, it's one very smart, creative, and considerate person who's making this whole process a lot more bearable.

And with that, it's time to get back to work so hopefully the next round of editing will be easier on both of us. ;)


terriko: (Default)

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