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Femion » 2008 » May

Registering for 3rd year

May 30th, 2008

I’ve just finished registering for classes for next year. So far, here’s what I’ve chosen:
Fall term:
Differential Equations I
Experimental Physics I
Quantum Physics
Electrodynamics
Mathematical Methods in Physics
Winter Term:
Differential Equations II
Experimental Physics II
Energy and the Environment
Advanced Classical Mechanics
Science and the Media
My fall term is going to be much more difficult than my winter term. Electrodynamics and Mathematical Methods are both 4th year courses, but I have to take them next year because the physics department at Dal is annoying and only offers half of its classes every other year. I’m excited about Energy and the Environment, which is a class comparing the financial and environmental cost of different forms of power, and Science and the Media, but they’re both 2nd year courses which are math-lite. I would have preferred taking Materials Science over Advanced Classical Mechanics, but alas the physics department is screwed up and I can’t take the prerequisite for that course because it isn’t offered this year.

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Huffman Encoding on a picture of David Huffman

May 8th, 2008

For my second term of honours linear algebra, I wrote a paper on JPEG image compression. I was only supposed to write it about DCT and quantization, but reading about the steps involved in JPEG encoding, I found out that some JPEGs are encoded using Huffman encoding as a final step, and I figured I should include that in my paper out of respect for my genes. I even used a scan of an image of me and Uncle David together to compare images with Huffman compression and without.

I realize that I probably got a lot of technical things wrong in this paper, but in my defence, I’m a physics major, not a comp sci major, and I stayed up until 4 in the morning the night before handing it in to finish it. Regardless, after handing it in, my professor responded with an e-mail that read “Congratulations on your project. It is very good.” and I think it’s the reason I got an A in that class despite nearly failing the midterm.

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How to move without a car

May 5th, 2008

I am moved into my home for the summer. It’s a nice big room on the second floor of a yellow house on Cherry St. It’s about three blocks away from a supermarket and within ten minutes of the Dal campus. It has a dishwasher, non coin-operated laundry and a big screen TV. It’s also one street over from where John is living.

However, moving in was quite a challenge. I had no car available as my parents are in Tucson. Residence kicked me out a week before I could move into my new place on the first. I was borrowing furniture from a friend, but the friend was leaving on the 29th. Luckily, John could move into his place a few days early, so we’d just walk all of my furniture and luggage to his new place and then move it to my new place on the 1st. Here’s our original plan:

moveplan1.jpg

Then it turned out that John would not be allowed to move things into his apartment until the 29th, and that my friend would be moving out on the 28th. She was also concerned about her furniture getting hurt by being carried several blocks. Fine. I stored some stuff in residence and at John’s place until I could move it into his place, and luckily my parents were friends with people who lived out in Clayton park. The furniture would be taken by my friend’s parents to Clayton park and then my parent’s friends in Clayton park would take my stuff to Cherry St. The plan was now as such:

moveplan2.jpg

The day that my friend was going to move out, another problem arose… her parents didn’t want to drive the furniture out to Clayton Park. I don’t think this was unreasonable, they had had a long day of moving. However, I had sent the address to them a week in advance. I compromised by storing all of the furniture and my luggage at John’s old bachelor apartment overnight, and moved it to his new place on the 29th when he moved. This change in plan was probably the most stressful day of the move. After that, it was easy to move my stuff from Shirley St. to Cherry St. Here’s what ended up happening. In the end, my luggage and furniture ended up going to two different locations before ending up where I wanted them, and John’s bachelor pad was pretty crowded for a night.

moveplan3.jpg

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All the gazette articles this year on my door

May 5th, 2008

The title of this post is pretty self explanatory. Throughout the year I posted all of my gazette articles on my bulletin board and my door. I’ve been out of residence for two weeks but I’m late in posting this because my camera cord has been packed up.

allgazettearticles.jpg

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