Monday, November 29, 2010


In the ongoing narrative of complaining-about-the-thesis-on-my-blog, I finished writing the thesis about two weeks ago.  Then I started making some new figures, which ran over by a few days, and American Bird Day took over before it got wrapped up.  

While visiting a state that is round on both ends and high in the middle, the cold air has been quite refreshing.  Not much work has been done on this trip, but I realized the way of holiday life can be summed up, shampoo-bottle-style, as "visit.  talk.  eat.  repeat."  After a week here, I really miss getting work done.

Friday, November 05, 2010

No Magsafe for You!!!

The furball is obsessed with unplugging the magsafe cord from my laptop.  She has unplugged it about 10 times in the last half hour.  In other news, two-year old figures just got updated to have better notation.  Exciting, huh?

241 Addendum 2

Another thought: Something tells that next near will be very different.  Moving this aside will free up a lot of energy, thought, and irritation.

For example, writing these blog posts is about 1000% more efficient as adding new details to a thesis that has an audience of four people.  Because this is creative and fun and that is not.  Another that is, but that's a story for another time and place.  

Back to that coffee…

241 Addendum

Back to sucking up a lot of time:  250 pages of tenth draft rewriting is really inefficient.  I'm realizing that I'm spending about 80% of my time reminding myself to concentrate and only 20% of my time actually writing or making new figure or new examples or whatever it needs to be that is going into this.

I'm going to go break all my rules and make some coffee after 5pm, so get today's work cranked out, since I gave myself a deadline.


I have not written anything substantial here in a while.  I have two entries going, that have been in progress for weeks, but the never ending thesis has been taking up a lot of time.  Or, I should admit, sucking up a lot of time.  

Rewriting material that I've rewritten about ten times before is exceedingly mind-numbing.  Especially when it's about 200 pages of such material.  But I'm now revising the final three chapters, which are revised from the papers they're associated with.  Two of those papers have had about about ten drafts (with the eleventh drafts next up after turning in the thesis versions).  The hardest part is that the mental concentration to stay focused on something exceedingly boring drains a lot of creativity out of the work.  It would be much more fun if this were a first writeup, but so it goes.  

There's two upsides. 

Overall, the whole document was outlined in less than a week and then put together in first draft form in about six weeks.  That was more fun.  The revisions will come to about three months of work.  There will be two more rounds of revisions after this, but they'll be significantly shorter.  Overall about 4 months of work (the first draft was done part-time).  

And the quality of this will be the highest of all the write-ups.  Even the eleventieth-ninth drafts of the papers that get submitted to siggraph 2089 will still be constrained by page length, so some things will just be hard to follow.  The thesis has the freedom to be arbitrarily clear.  

I may or might start writing a bunch of nonsense here to keep writing momentum going for the next couple weeks, which is the final stretch.  I planned some travel for Thanksgiving, so that's the ultimate deadline, as I'm not taking this with me.  If only these things had real deadlines.

And I'm not proofreading this entry today.

And you an track the page length on facebook.  Yeah, that's what those numbers I've been posting all year are all about.