Monday, May 23, 2005


Looks like I'll be spending my summer down in the San Diego area. I found out today that I was offered the internship at Aperio. Since I currently have nothing else on the table, and since the pay is good, the work looks fairly interesting, and I need the money, the probability approaches 1 that I will accept the offer. This of course means that I'll have to find a place to live down there, but I should be able to manage that. This definitely lifts my spirits.


I have officially accepted the internship.


Blogger Luke said...

But what will the Y say? THINK OF THE Y!!!!!!!!!!!

5/24/2005 8:36 AM  

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Sunday, May 22, 2005

Ow...My Pride

Thanks go to Jerry for the title idea. Since 3 people have asked already, and I'm quickly growing tired of giving this update to everyone I know individually, I'll just get on with it here. Yes, I had my interview with Aperio on Saturday. I think it went fairly well. They showed me around their office, demoed their scopes to me, gave me an overview of the software behind the scopes, and asked me some questions. Though most of it was them talking to me about their company, I did talk about some of the stuff I had done. No programming type questions like sort the array, which is good since I don't like doing that kind of stuff under pressure. I guess they figured that I knew how to do that already. I wish that was a more common assumption. I was fairly impressed by what they told me about the software they use to run the scopes. Seems fairly well designed. Demoed my 435 app as the example of GUI work which I had done in C#, which fortunately didn't crash and burn horribly. They seemed impressed by it.

And of course no trip through LA could be complete without the rear-ending on the 405. That's right, I ended up rear-ending some guy on the 405 on the way down there. No one was injured, and it somehow didn't snowball into some huge pileup (only 4 cars including mine were involved). My truck runs just fine, with the exception of the dent in the bottom of the bumper. I continued driving it to San Diego without incident. I'm told by just about everyone I've told this to that I should be thankful that no one got hurt or died, though I don't find that particularly reassuring. I'd rather not go into a lot of detail here, as I know for a fact there's 3 people on this earth who would be extremely interested in what I had to say regarding the accident; and I'd rather not give them anything to use against me as the situation isn't resolved yet. If you want to know more, ask me in person and I'll give you an earfull. But at least everyone who reads this no longer has to ask Was anyone hurt? and Is your truck ok? and How did your interview go? As a recap, just my pride, kinda, and fairly well.

So, yeah, my weekend was ruined before it even began. And I still have to finish OS and Algorithms. This quarter has turned into a fucking trainwreck. I want it to end once I get everything done.

One more thing. I at least tried to enjoy the weekend, and ended up looking around UCSD just for the hell of it. It's a big campus, like all UC's are, though it didn't really impress me all that much (except the huge fucking library (Seriously, click on that link; it's a beautiful and big building). One thing that caught my attention was this.


UCSD has a Tenaya dorm. Much bigger than the one here (there are at least another 2 stories under the picture), but still a Tenaya dorm. Do all state-owned universities conspire to have everything named similarly, or do they just lack imagination?


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Monday, May 16, 2005

An Answer...Surprisingly

So I got an answer back today from University House. Much to my surprise, it was a personalized answer that agreed with me. Don't know if anything will come of it (letters are cheap, after all), but at least I got an answer. Text is below.

I received your email concerning the office at Mustang Village II being closed during business hours. While I do not have specifics concerning the reason, I do agree with you that we need to do better. I will speak with the onsite staff to determine the need for additional staffing and whether this was due to not enough people in general or a result of a temporary staffing issue. Thank you for your inquiry and concern.


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Saturday, May 14, 2005

I Love Being Blown Off

Yesterday I received notice From Netflix that Penn and Teller: Bullshit was supposed to arrive today. So I eagerly went over to the Mustang Village II office to pick up the disc. The office was closed. I called the Mustang I office, who told me they were busy and that the disc was there if I wanted to pick it up. So I drove over there and picked it up. I told them that they perhaps needed to hire more people if they couldn't staff both offices. They replied that they were fully staffed. I responded by saying that they obviously weren't, as them being busy made them unable to have an office open when it was supposed to be. I suggested that they look into it. They said they would, but in a way that sounded like they were blowing me off.

It pisses me off that they're so willing to treat me with such disregard. I pay enough to live here, and I expect them to, at the bare minimum, have the office open when it's supposed to be open. It pissed me off enough that I decided to write the corporate office. I rarely write letters, as I find it rarely does anything to fix the situation, but I think that problems are often not fixed because those in charge don't know there's a problem, or think that no one cares about the problem. By writing corporate, neither of those excuses applies. Below is the text of my letter.

I am writing to complain about the front desk service at the University House, Mustang Village property. It would perhaps make more sense to contact Mustang Village directly, but it is my hope that sending this to the corporate office will increase the probability that something will be done to address my complaint.

As you are aware, University House owns 2 properties in San Luis Obispo. I live in University House, Mustang Village 2. Today I attempted to go to the Mustang 2 office to pick up some mail that was too large to fit in the mailboxes provided for us. Although the office should have been open between the hours of 10:00 am and 5:00 pm, it was not. I checked back several times between the hours of 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm, but the office was not open at any of these times. I called the Mustang 1 office, who told me they were too busy there to send anyone to the Mustang 2 office. They suggested that I go over to the Mustang Village 1 office to pick up my mail, which was there.

When I arrived at the Mustang Village 1 office, it did not appear that they were busy at all. I told the office staff that perhaps they needed to hire more desk staff if they were unable to properly staff the Mustang 2 office during posted hours. They told me that they were fully staffed and did not need to hire any more people. I then suggested that they look into the situation at hand, which left no one to man the Mustang 2 office when it was supposed to be open. They said they would look into it, but they said it in a way that suggested that they would not look into it at all.

This is at least the second time that I have found the Mustang 2 office not open during posted hours. I am told by others that it is not an uncommon occurrence. I do not usually have occasion to go to the office, so I cannot say how often the office is closed when it should be open. I am only able to vouch for the 2 times I can remember when I tried to go to the Mustang 2 office during posted hours but found it closed. I find it inconvenient to be forced to walk to the other office because the front desk staff is unable to man the Mustang 2 office during posted hours. I find it upsetting that the front desk staff and the management does not see this as a problem.

I am a good tenant. I pay my rent on time, and I do not cause problems around the complex. I fulfill my end of the contract that I and University House signed. I only expect that University House do what they say they will do, just as I do what I say I will do. Just as University House expects me to pay my rent by the 5th of each month because I said I would, I expect University House to open the Mustang Village 2 office when they say it will be open. This is all I ask. If it is too much to ask that University House, Mustang Village do what they say they will do, it may force me to reconsider living here in the future.

Hopefully I'll get a response soon. If I don't, I'll be really pissed. As much as I complained about Cerro's front desk and Poly's mail service, at least they were there when they said they'd be there (except for the package center, which also had a problem being open when they were supposed to be).


Anonymous Will said...

That's amazing. Good letter, though...I'm sure it'll get somebody's attention.

5/15/2005 9:45 PM  
Blogger Luke said...

or, more likely, it will give them a good laugh at the tenant they are not providing services to.

5/16/2005 10:35 AM  

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Thursday, May 12, 2005

One Possible Explanation

As many know, an epidemic exists in this country. One that props up an entire industry at the expense of others, who must give large quantities of money to heartless corporations in order to afford the antidote. Unfortunately the medicine disappears quickly, and soon they are left buying or even getting for free yet more of this magic remedy, which they know will not last for long.

Yes, the cure can be obtained for free. For out of sheer altruism (or perhaps the marketing value and image of benevolence), most major companies shower Americans with this product for that which plagues us all. In fact, it is possible for one to live their entire life without purchasing this magic medicine. Unfortunately, the quality of the free product is sometimes poor; and it is often necessary to pay for a better quality product.

The government is powerless to stop this epidemic. For the entire US government, the CDC, the WHO, and even the UN are all infected. How then could they stop it? Even if they weren't infected, there is no known quarantine available to separate the healthy from the sick. Thus, we are all doomed to eternally seek out more of the cure to this disease.

I am of course talking about the epidemic of disappearing pens that permeates our society. At the beginning of the school year, I had an entire cup full of pens to choose from. Today, I had one shitty pen left. I had to go out and buy pens since I didn't have any left (that and I hate ball point pens with a passion. Give me roller balls or gel pens any day).

As an even more poignant example, one year when I was working at the Y as a Lifeguard, we had purchased a pack of 20 pens. The idea was that we'd always have pens available when we needed one. In less than a month, all 20 pens were gone. No trace of them left. So I ask, where did they go? There should be 20 pens in there somewhere. Where are they?

I have a theory about where they go. I think that there must be a parallel universe somewhere where all lost pens end up. Think about it: how often do you lose a pen? Quite often. How often do you ever find those pens? I'd be willing to bet you almost never find a lost pen. That's because they no longer exist in this universe; they're now in the Pen Universe. And I'd also be willing to bet that the pen companies have a portal to the Pen Universe so they can retrieve, repackage, and resell lost pens, refilling those precious few that actually get used up. It'd really be a brilliant plan. There's no manufacturing costs. The only costs would be the cost of packaging and the cost of getting the pens from the Pen Universe.

And now for something completely different. My favorite bittorrent site got shut down today by the MPAA (fortunately after I finished downloading The Daily Show). I can understand why they did this. I was downloading cable content while not paying for content. I didn't have the permission of the copyright holder. But it still pisses me off because I liked not having to pay for cable. One other thing pissed me off. According to the MPAA's press release MPAA said it hopes to work with these torrent sites to provide entertainment products legally like it does with Napster. I'd love it if they would actually work with these sites to allow me to legally download The Daily Show and other shows I enjoy watching. Unfortunately, it'll never happen. I know it; they know it. So drop the bullshit and just say that there are no plans to make this happen. It'll end up pissing off fewer people.


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Wednesday, May 11, 2005

One At Every College

If not one, at least one. There seems every year to be someone who comes to campus, condemning everyone to hell. This usually results in large crowds of people, half of whom mock the person with the sign (I heard, but didn't see, that someone in the crowd had a This Guy is an Idiot sign), half of whom side with the guy with the sign. Perhaps this ratio is different; I don't know. As Forrest mentioned, he condemned all the people having more fun than himself to hell. And according to a friend of mine who was selling Cal Poly ties at the UU while this was all happening, this guy hated on Mormons more than any other group appearing on his sign. Here's a picture of the goings on. Unfortunately I didn't get a good picture of the stuff on the sign, but you get the idea.

sign guy

The one I don't understand is the Computer Geeks entry. Now, granted, I haven't read every single verse of the Bible; but I'm pretty sure that had the concept of computing existed back when the Bible was written, computer geeks would not have been condemned to hell. Besides, this sign looks professionally made, which implies that it was made with a computer. Usually, computer stuff comes from computer geeks. One wonders why he would support such an evil industry. And while I support the guy's right to do this, I have to wonder why it draws such large crowds. It can't just be to mock him, so what is it? Perhaps it's just that more people than are willing to admit actually agree with the guy and would prefer he do it than they.


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A Perfect Moment

So Jerry, Catherine, and myself are listening to the radio when Catherine decides to change the station. We hear a rather staticy sound emanating from the radio, to which I say We're either listening to static or Metallica. A few seconds later, we hear the DJ say and that was Metallica with Pulling Teeth. It was one of those surreal moments.


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Sunday, May 08, 2005

Just As I Remember It

I just finished taking traffic school online from the same site that I took it 3 years ago when I got my speeding ticket. Here's an excerpt from the course that I found particularly humorous

  • Put yourself in the other driver's shoes: Instead of judging the other driver, try to imagine why he or she is driving that way. Someone speeding and constantly changing lanes may be a volunteer fireman or a physician rushing to a hospital. Someone who jerks from one lane to another may have a reason, like a bee in the car (emphasis mine) or a crying baby. Whatever their reason, it has nothing to do with you. Stay cool and don't take other driver's actions personally.

Now perhaps I shouldn't be mocking this sentence. After all, a wasp did try to build a nest in the driver's side doorjamb of my truck last quarter. But that's still a pretty damn random thing to throw in the sentence. And as an example of random answer choices, here's one of my favorite questions from one of the section quizzes:

Examples of two-point violations include:
Running a STOP sign or stop light
Exceeding the posted speed limit
Reckless driving, driving under the influence or drugs or alcohol, hit-and-run
Failing to yield the right-of-way
Listening to Barry Manilow

All kidding aside, I did learn one thing and one thing only that I didn't previously know that I found important. The course mentioned something about a preliminary alcohol screening for people under 21, and that someone driving a car under 21 automatically consents to taking one. I decided to look up what a preliminary alcohol screening was and found Section 13388 of the California Vehicle Code:

If a peace officer lawfully detains a person under 21 years of age who is driving a motor vehicle, and the officer has reasonable cause to believe that the person is in violation of Section 23136, the officer shall request that the person take a preliminary alcohol screening test to determine the presence of alcohol in the person, if a preliminary alcohol screening test device is immediately available. If a preliminary alcohol screening test device is not immediately available, the officer may request the person to submit to chemical testing of his or her blood, breath, or urine, conducted pursuant to Section 23612.


For the purposes of this section, a preliminary alcohol screening test device is an instrument designed and used to measure the presence of alcohol in a person based on a breath sample.

So from the looks of things, my rallying cry of I demand a blood test! would get my license taken away. Hell, upon further reading, people over 21 don't have that option either, from the looks of things. I give you Section 23612, subdivision d, paragraph 2:

If a blood or breath test is not available under subparagraph (A) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (a), or under subparagraph (A) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (a), or under paragraph (1) of this subdivision, the person shall submit to the remaining test in order to determine the percent, by weight, of alcohol in the person's blood. If both the blood and breath tests are unavailable, the person shall be deemed to have given his or her consent to chemical testing of his or her urine and shall submit to a urine test.

I was going to complain how people under 21 don't have the option of demanding a blood test. It still doesn't seem right, even though it's more or less the same law phrased in a slightly different way. Either way, it doesn't seem like you have the legal right to demand a blood test. Though if this is the case, I wonder why lawmakers felt the need to make a completely different law for people under 21. I'll just be glad when I don't have to deal with this shit anymore


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Friday, May 06, 2005

I'm a Bad College Student

Not because I'm writing this during my OS class, but because I completely forgot about Cinco de Mayo, which was yesterday. I was reminded of this fact last night when several drunks living next to Jerry reminded us of this fact. They opined that we needed to party more and get some fucking pussy. The drinking more I can understand and may even agree with. Why he wanted me to get a cat is beyond me.


Blogger staticfoo said...

Damn it, WTF is wrong with blogger? It won't completely delete posts?

Anyway, perhaps you should get yourself some hobo wine. Sample the other flavours, maybe?

5/06/2005 3:53 PM  

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Monday, May 02, 2005

Reverend Aaron


Thanks the the Universal Life Church, I have been ordained a minister. This means I can marry people (looks at Tim and Catherine). As a minister of the Universal Life Church, it's my job to promote the following ideals:

  • Promote freedom of religion
  • Do what is right

I think I can live with that.


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A Lesson Learned

So apparently Dr. Franklin doesn't like people cursing at Xilinx after it corrupts your work, refuses to work, and makes you start all over. So for future reference, even if Xilinx is acting like a goddamn piece of shit, it'd be best to not say it in front of her.


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Sunday, May 01, 2005

Not a Rocky Horror, But a Horror Nonetheless

So Myself, Jerry, Forrest, and Catherine are all kicking it at Catherine's place watching CSI when Catherine gets the idea for us to go see The Rocky Horror Picture Show, which happens to be playing in town at midnight. Now I had never seen Rocky Horror, nor had I ever been to one of the showings of the movie. My freshman year I almost went but decided not to go once I realized it was going to cost $9.00. Anyways, Catherine convinced us all that it was something that everyone needed to do at least once. Since neither I nor anyone else had any real objection to seeing it, we decided to go.

Unfortunately, they had sold out a couple hours ago, so we were shit out of luck. Though we did get to see see some of the people dressed in drag as they were walking to the theater. I don't really understand the draw of that movie, nor do I understand why it's part of the Rocky Horror culture to dress in drag, but that's not relevant to the story. As we were walking back to the car, Forrest gets the idea that we should do something equally as crazy in lieu of seeing the movie. I suggest getting drunk, just as I always suggest; and Forrest agrees with the idea, just as he always does. We think for a second about how to make that crazy, when Forrest says those two fateful words: Hobo wine. For those unfamiliar with the hobo wine concept, I refer you to this informative site.

Our purpose clear, we begin our quest to obtain hobo wine. Unfortunately, these wines are usually only available in bad parts of town. Unfortunately, these don't really exist in SLO. Forrest informs the group that Mad Dog 20/20 is available at Cork n' Bottle, so we head over there and obtain some. Our quest complete, we head back to my place to party.

Mad Dog 20/20This was our adversary for the evening (photo courtesy of Notice the bling bling in the gold chain on the label. Most booze, even the really bad stuff, tries to take itself seriously. This doesn't. That's how bad it is. We all try some of this stuff and discover it to be a vile drink. In the course of this discovery, someone, possibly Forrest, wonders aloud if the entire bottle we purchased would be enough to get me drunk. I say it isn't, others disagree. Eventually, a bet is made; and I'm told I have to drink the whole bottle in 5 minutes. A simple task, but not really one I'm looking forward to. The timer starts, and I start chugging. I stop after half the bottle is gone. I find this to be a bad idea. As long as I'm chugging, I'm not tasting this blue concoction brewed in the depths of hell (also known as Westfield, New York). When I stop, my mouth is filled with its disgustingly sweet taste. After Ben gets his camera so this event can be chronicled, I continue chugging. I finish the bottle quite easily, as I've chugged many a beverage before. Of course now I taste the wine again, but I can't eat anything for a half hour (condition of the bet). I survive, and we all sit back and watch Firefly to pass the time. Eventually, it gets late, and everyone leaves.

Now I deny that I was drunk. I may have been slightly buzzed, but I definitely wasn't the Drunk and Beligerant Aaron that I transform into after I've been drinking a lot. We'll have to wait until later to see how the results of the bet turn out. Until then, here's some pictures.

me drinking MD

Here's me near the end of my chugging. I look relaxed because I'm not actually tasting the Mad Dog, but I was not enjoying life shortly after this picture was taken once it was all gone.

MD OMT Diagram

Here's an OMT diagram (a software engineering thing for those not in the know) of MD 20/20 courtesy of Forrest. From this diagram, we can see that Mad Dog 20/20 is a child class of wine, which in turn is a child class of beverage. If this were my design, I would have made an alcoholic subclass of beverage, which wine would be a subclass of. But I'm sure space constraints played a part in Forrest's design decision. We can also see that MD 20/20 instantiates an object of type Fortified and is strongly associated with the Ick class. If this were my design, I would have made a Fortified interface that MD 20/20 would implement, but I'm sure Forrest had a reason why he designed it this way.


Forrest tells me it was a UML diagram, not an OMT diagram. But that doesn't really matter that much, OMT and UML describe the relationships in the diagram using the same symbols.


Blogger Forrest said...

Thats not OMT. Its UML.

5/01/2005 9:49 PM  
Blogger Aaron *@ said...

My bad. They all look the same to me anyways. Will fix it.

5/01/2005 9:53 PM  

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