blog

unsent

I meant to write a thank you note
for something you said last year
I wrote it out, then thought a bit
and tore it up, in fear

that maybe my words of indebtedness
may somehow be misconstrued
as frivolous attempts to reopen books
of our life that you’d rather exclude

from memories, thoughts and sentiments
that you live your life by now
some framed, some talked of, some celebrated
some quietly disavowed

so here’s to every thought around the world
that failed to reach a heart
one can only hope, and idealize
that they have a counterpart.

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Delicious Nerdery

This is what happens when you host a BBQ with mostly Computer Science people.

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reaching out

  • Russel Davies painted his laptop to work as a blackboard. I think the acrylic casing for the iBook makes an excellent whiteboard too.
  • Friend and mentor Cong Yu just got an honorable mention in the SIGMOD Dissertation Award:
    …Two other nominees receive Honorable Mention recognizing their outstanding work on theoretical foundations and development of algorithms with great impact on important practical problems: Cong Yu, for his dissertation on “Managing Complex Databases in a Schema Management Framework” at the University of Michigan, and, Nilesh Dalvi, for his dissertation on “Managing Uncertainty Using Probabilistic Databases” at the University of Washington.

    It’s interesting to see the hiring trends : the Award was won by now-MSR researcher Ariel Fuxman. Nilesh and Cong are both Yahoo! Researchers.

  • Natalie Du Toit’s “wonderful story of courage, determination, discipline, hopes and dreams”, becoming the first amputee to qualify for the Olympics.
  • It’s not every day that the White House asks you to become a Vampire Slayer.

DIY iPhone amplifier

I was cleaning up my home directory when I found this amusing picture I took a while back:
iPhone amplifier
I like to listen to music while cooking, but since most cooking is inherently noisy, the diminutive iPhone in-built speakers need some form of amplification to find good use. Enter the Arnab 2000: Zero-power amplifiers for the Kitchen! Built with oven-safe glass and ceramic, this incredible invention creates a nice little acoustic chamber that projects out the sound with a richer and louder quality! Can also be disassembled to be used as mixing and serving bowls!

Note: Keep away from the primary cooking area, especially when you’re frantically looking for a receptacle to pour fresh-cooked hot curry.

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root three

The root three poem from Harold & Kumar 2:

I’m sure that I will always be
A lonely number like root three

The three is all that’s good and right,
Why must my three keep out of sight
Beneath the vicious square root sign,
I wish instead I were a nine

For nine could thwart this evil trick,
with just some quick arithmetic

I know I’ll never see the sun, as 1.7321
Such is my reality, a sad irrationality

When hark! What is this I see,
Another square root of a three

As quietly co-waltzing by,
Together now we multiply
To form a number we prefer,
Rejoicing as an integer

We break free from our mortal bonds
With the wave of magic wands

Our square root signs become unglued
Your love for me has been renewed

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life update

Was in Seattle last week. Highlights:


Microsoft Research Building (above); UofM CS Building (below)

Microsoft Research’s new building is fancier than our new department building, but our offices are much better.

Lunching at the Space Needle is worth the high price. You get to sit and eat your lunch while downtown Seattle, Mt. Rainier and the lake revolve around you. The food is good, the view is spectacular on a good day and the service is eager and efficient.


Jidori Chicken with Roasted Garlic-Mashed Potatoes, White Zinfandel

There is an On Stage interactive exhibit at The Experience Music Project that lets you pretend you are a rock star, complete with simulated audience, fully set up stage (with monitors) and instruments that play themselves. The 20$ video they took of me was a little pricey in my opinion, but if you’re going as a group, this is totally worth it.


Art installation at the EMP

photocredits: me, rob scoble, eduardod

linked list

people at the opera

A picture from acclaimed photographer Bill Henson ‘s rather amazing low-light series, Paris Opera Project:

How the baby was sitting still through such a long exposure shot escapes me. More commentary by the photographer and Rachel Hulin here.

Another impressive picture by Andy Batt, also found on Rachel’s blog. This one’s more of a hi-speed shot:

bags, balls and boyfriends

Links today brought to you by Red Bull™, my abusive friend in a can pushing me through a rather crazy day.

  • Lego Schoolbag : If I was a 10 year old girl, I would give away my younger brother for this one.
  • Every expression in this picture is priceless. I like how our hero has resigned to prayer.
  • A hilarious sketch from Snuff Box, starring Matt Berry, who also stars in the hilarious britcom The IT Crowd.
  • Adobe is opening up the SWF and FLV formats with the Open Screen project. (No sir, this is not about Single White Females or Fine Looking Virgins.) Flash has been sort of open for a while, with projects like SWFTools and GNash, but this takes things to a whole new level, with a slew of bigwig corporate backers. Flash and FLV have been in my opinion the critical enablers to the online video revolution; and this is definitely a great step ahead. I’m curious to know what Microsoft’s Silverlight team is thinking, as well as the folks at Sun (who just opened up all of Java). And of course, let’s not to forget the Android folks who have a very pretty stack, but tacking on some Flash magic would definitely be a very big deal. Considering the significant overlap between supporters of the Adobe effort and the Google effort, this is going to be fun to watch.

violated

you look nice
there seems to be a glow i cannot place
i dont want to know how your weekend went
or what they did to you
but you seem more full of life
you feel… different
touching you was easier on the fingers before
i’m not sure if i like it this way
or if i will get used to this
but i am happy you’re better and with me now
i was worried i’d lost you entirely
i’m just glad you were covered under AppleCare.

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