Archive for February, 2008

csc357 midterm

February 29, 2008

Took it last friday, got it back today. Was hoping for a perfect score, but in the end the entire class like, failed.. average was 28/50. I got 39/50. Curve –> 39/45. Lost 2 points twice for unnecessary use of malloc() and 5 for plain stupidity.. crap like that always happens. Hopefully I can still get my A.

someone: “nico, raise my grade.”
nico: “no.”
someone: “sudo raise my grade.”

haha.. i laughed so hard. the reference:
xkcd sudo make me a sandwich
(it’s a linux thing – if you still don’t get it, that’s fine. sudo = root access. >:D)

Quarter’s coming to an end, lots and lots of assignments to do.. fun! Here begins another Friday night >_>

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bio “quiz” (fun)

February 27, 2008

my bio quiz in a jiffy:

while (!done)
{
question = read(test);
answer = pullAnswerFromCheatSheet(question);
markScantron(answer);
}

yep, questions were in order, answers were in order, verbatim..
i am laughing on the inside.
didn’t even have to read it all.. only like the first 3-4 words.

if his final is like this too, i’m not even going to do the extra credit .. lol

rsync + omfg interviews

February 23, 2008

rsync is a wonderful utility. Ability to preserve permissions/times, with recursion, to synchronize two folders, ssh, a quick difference-detecting algorithm.. I’m now using it to sync up folders and back up things. It’s more than just great.

On another note, I can’t believe this happened.. Here I was, on a Friday night, programming. I opened Firefox to slack, and went to My Cal Poly to look at how full classes got from today’s registration rotation. I clicked “Mustang Jobs” for no reason, and “Pending Campus Interviews” for no good reason, thinking that there was nothing going to be there…

I was wrong. Very wrong.

Apparently, Apple wanted an interview with me for their Hardware Intern position in their iPod division.. and Salesforce.com wanted one with me for their Software Quality Engineer internship position. I got notifications for neither. Interview signups ended a couple weeks ago. As with most well-built systems, I was expecting an email of some sort to notify me that something happened. But no, Mustang Jobs just failed. Was I really expected to check back THERE for that sort of thing? I got pretty angry and my roommate told me that the same thing happened to him before, too..

And then I just checked the Preferences tab: Choose 'yes' to receive email notifications of preselect status and scheduled interviews.
And there it was – THE BOX WAS ALREADY ON YES.
Having a broken notification system is even worse than having no notification system at all. Just wow. And yes, I checked my spam boxes..

Now I reside in frustration, wanting one of those two internships.. Proper calls will be made but I’ll have the first impression of an idiot by not even seeing those deadlines.

eat eat eat eat eat

February 20, 2008

skipping breakfast seems semi-normal for a lot of people, seeing how I sleep in until the very last minute.. now i’m a little more wary since some days, for some weird reason, i only eat half of what i normally would. it comes up randomly, when i least expect it.. i just.. can’t eat as much as i would/should. every time i eat normally now (1-1.5 cups of rice per meal) i get really happy knowing that i’m going normal again.. but serve to disappoint myself soon enough.

needs more breakfast and just more .. eating.. i’m skinny enough as it is. i do eat breakfast.. like 3-4 times a week only. =\

maybe i’m just sick of my own cooking. rice.. veggies.. meat.. too much of that. but this is all i’ve got, and i have to constantly work through weeks of choy before they go bad.. and every time a restocking@home opportunity comes up, i have to take it, since it’s my only chance..

what a rut. only.. 4 more quarters.. holy shit.. only 4 more quarters of school!?@ HOLY CRAP THAT IS SOON

i got an interview with Amgen, for a generic engineering internship in Thousand Oaks.
.. i’d really want to be at home.
out of all places i applied for, I get an interview for THAT..

My blog is boring. (and more crap)

February 19, 2008

elliee (11:45:53 PM): OMG
elliee (11:45:56 PM): WHY DID HE READ THESE
elliee (11:45:58 PM): THEY ARE SO BORING
ricky (11:46:05 PM): EVEN I THINK THEY’RE BORING
ricky (11:46:06 PM): WTF

.. It’s meant to be boring. This blog is more like “random encounterings of shit in daily engineering”. haha.

I remember back in the days.. one blog for what I did every day. Damn, that thing got repetitive. Also had xanga for a different aspect of blogging (more like teen angst ranting.) Damn, past blogs and past message logs/pictures take things way back..

On another note, I changed my schedule again LOL.. Ahlgren’s 375 lab filled up before normal registration even began. (Priority kids filled it good.) I need to get Parag and Brim to join me in the Thursday 12-3 one. With that I was also able to move 228 to the other section – friends say Zhang is easy, and it’s a more relaxed schedule.. except for deathly Wednesdays.

My hard drive random-crashing-shit and everything fixed from moving it from SATA port 1 to port 4.. wtf? 1+ month of annoyances for almost nothing. (Not to mention, a lost lab report.) I would have never expected it, but that random guess was right.. This random crap happens all the time and it’s weird. For example, this weekend, Tina was asking me why unplugging her earphones from her laptop didn’t trigger the speakers to be on. She did it several times, and I walked around thinking of what it could be, knowing that when I unplugged it, it would work – and it did. ……… I have no idea.

Yeah, went home this weekend, it was either that weekend or never.. It was stupid how I got off at Wednesday 3pm and didn’t go home till Thursday 9pm. Should have taken Amtrak or something for that extra 1.25 days at home. Barely had enough time to do things. Or I should have gone with Brim instead of being the last-minute 5th taking the passenger seat in Peter’s car.. I felt pretty guilty about that.

Big week coming up – big EE lab, CS lab and program, CS midterm and EE midterm..

melody. – Haruka 遥花 ~はるか~ came out not too long ago – at first I didn’t like it that much, but now I really do. プルメリア is good too, and so is That’s The Way It Is.. wow.. I’ll never cease to be amazed, for some stupid reason.

Lesson learned? Don’t use software firewalls

February 16, 2008

.. with some exceptions, of course.

I spent several hours at Eric’s house doing a bunch of ping tests to determine which device was acting “funny” and his switch and laptop OK’d. His desktop and server were both using nVidia’s nForce something something firewall.. Some filesharings wouldn’t work, some pings were random, and other pings were obnoxiously random.. and some returned duplicate packets with negative ping times. It took me 2 hours to narrow it down to the firewall (and more like, realize that there WAS an nVidia firewall on the system) and after I uninstalled it, all pings were <1ms as they should have been, and file sharing worked properly.. What a bunch of thinking for almost nothing.

Lesson learned? Don’t use software firewalls if you’re already protected from incoming connections from the Internet by a router.. it’s unnecessary. Of course, exceptions apply to the following two cases (and possibly more): If you have malware on your system that you want to prevent from connecting out, or if you actually want to protect yourself from people on your local network. If you’re using campus internet, it gets a little more complicated than that – just have it on in that case.

i think ahead too much – spring planning

February 13, 2008

EE 335/375 work out almost perfectly in terms of times and taking it with friends and what not. It’s also Ahlgren, who is fairly easy in lab, and supposedly lecture is one of those classes where you don’t keep up all quarter and everything goes over your head and you just study for the midterms. (Says Wilson)

That being said, I am probably going to take that as my first tech elective.. which would mean a very ugly, 17 unit, 3 lab EE/CS quarter.

Holy crap.. MWF look disgusting. T just looks retarded. R looks normal, lol.

Just that extra class (which is actually 5 units – normally EE is 3 lec 1 lab but for this class it’s 4/1.) will push my schedule from comfortable to over the top.. I think I can do it. After all, all it really is, is neglection of one class.. and less slacking time..

Spring quarters are notorious for its lack of trips home, which means less cooking of Asian food – which means less time spent preparing/cooking/cleaning up. I’ll probably switch to some retarded pasta/pizza schedule mixed in with normal cooking.. since I seem to be unable to go over a single day without rice. (LOL.)

And just that extra class, and I can ditch the whole “4+1” thing (4 years + 1 quarter) and just do 4 years. Senior year quarters go from ridiculously easy to fairly reasonable.. Assuming I don’t spend 357-like time on my senior project.

Now to score a job and living arrangements at Berkeley with LightRiver

I do think too much – just watch, all of this nonsense will just fall through and I won’t want to do it anymore. And laugh.

A Perfectly Timed I/O Crash.. and QoS?

February 12, 2008

So after my BioE midterm Monday, I pretty much had nothing to do since the CSC 357 program and lab were done with. So I procrastinated on working on my EE lab report on Zener diodes, and ended up helping .. lots of people.. with lots of things. And played 2 games of DotA. I didn’t start till like 2am.. Needless to say, I didn’t get really far because I was still feeling unmotivated. Slept on it and started working on it at like 1:30pm, and I was about to finish at 2:30, when.. my hard drive decides to have another I/O crash. That cost me 10-15 minutes and I was unable to finish my lab report on time to hand in. We only have to do 1 report from a bunch of them, and that means I’ll just do the next one on Bipolar Junction Transistors – but it is going to be harder. Now I hate myself so much for slacking until the last minute and having simple karma bite me. “I hate this, I hate this, I hate this” – but I’ll just look on the bright side, and consider writing another lab report on BJTs as a furthering learning experience so I understand them more.

An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk0\D during a paging operation.

On another note, I really really need QoS to throttle BitTorrent to the lowest packet priority. With multiple roommates BTing throughout the week(s), it seems like I can never do anything without degrading internet performance. And with QoS, we wouldn’t have to worry about upload caps as much as we do now..

Illness, Bio, EE, Slackin’, GPA/Spring, Interview?

February 9, 2008

Everyone seems to be getting sick lately. It’s the usual winter-ness.. if you remember me in high school, I was sniffly all the time (except sophomore year for some really really weird reason.) Same happened in college when my 1st/2nd winter quarters started in the morning, but now I start at 11 MWF and get as much sleep as I want every other day.. so I’m prone to it. Otherwise.. I’d be sick too. Good luck to everyone getting better.. at least like.. 20 of you @_@

My Bio teacher is .. that terrible, I guess. Since we “haven’t covered enough material” (who is actually learning in this class? we are memorizing things for the quizzes) he actually CANCELLED the midterm coming up on Wednesday. For some reason I was looking forward to that.. because I had nothing big that week except for those two Bio exams. Now one’s cancelled forever and our grade is out of two 25-point quizzes and a 100-point final. AND THEN in substitution, he gave us 4 “virtual labs” for 10 points each extra credit.. which means a potential +27% increase to the 150-point grade. WTF?! I am so getting a zero-effort A. I haven’t had an “extreme bullshit” class like this since ENGL 149 freshman winter with Wilson. (No tests/homework/anything and get a B)

After staying up till 5am Wednesday doing the EE 306 midterm redo, I was too tired to do anything Wednesday.. and ended up doing everything BUT homework Thursday – dishes, wiped the counter and stove, dusted my work areas and cleaned the bathroom, vacuumed, yeah.. I didn’t know it was New Years until the night before. I thought it was next week or something. I also had dinner at my cousin’s (well, “nephew”‘s) place which was pretty good but also contributed to the “I don’t want to do anything anymore since last week”-ness.

EE midterm came back and I did poorly.. relatively poorly. Could’ve gotten 10-15 more points had I actually gotten some sleep and studied a bit more instead of coding to hell to midnight the night before. Nonetheless with the redo for an averaged grade instead of a curve (holy crap, redo + lenient grading?) I’ll get like an 85. Could’ve been in the 90s.. but oh well, I’ll learn next time. Now I’m looking forward to having Derickson for EE 403 – Fiber Optic Communication.

I got an email for an interview.. which wasn’t even for me. Apparently someone made a typo or something and someone looking for some sort of Marketing/Publishing position in New York.. had my email down? Uh… okay. Way to ruin my hopes, though.

This will be my first quarter with a >3.0 GPA.. how sad. Actually more like >3.5, with the way things are going, I’m aiming for a 3.7. However, EE lab and .. the rest of the quarter has yet to surprise me. Kind of odd going from “almost kicked out” to this state, but that’s what I expected when finally heading to bigger, upper.. stuff.

I’m looking forward to having Angela over the weekend after week 4 spring quarter – hopefully I won’t be too busy then. This is the schedule that I’m aiming for, but things may shift around a bit. Classes for sure, times/sections not so much. I’ll want to have sections with friends.. for some reason.

Speaking of which, yay for a valentine this year.. so pointless. “Now what?” haha, fun stuff.

And back to productivity – I said I was going to code today.. nope. I hate myself for doing this. Only once a quarter..

.. I need a router with QoS.
And maybe an increased cable pipe.. 10/1 sounds better than 5000/512 with my roommates torrenting all week.. nah, QoS sounds better.

Antec EarthWatts EA380 380W Power Supply.. and BioE midterm false alarm?

February 5, 2008

Not too long ago I picked up the Antec EarthWatts EA380 for $5 AR at Newegg .. cause it was cheap. Peter got one too, and it’s more efficient in the sense that it’s > 80% .. efficient. It pulls less power out of the wall to provide the same power to the machine. My system was using my 4+ year-old Antec Sonata 1 380W psu which was more than enough, but it only had 20 pins instead of 24. Even motherboard manufacturers say it’s OK to plug a 20-pin PSU into the 24-pin board, but those 4 pins are for the PCI-E graphics card! It still worked though, but some random instability issues got really annoying. I figured that a couple bucks for the EarthWatts would be worth it.

Finally got it Monday – for some reason, it came from the east coast, while some people on the east coast had it shipped from SoCal.. go figure. I immediately began to take out my existing PSU, but had to remove my CPU’s HSF to do so.. which actually wasn’t that hard, just a couple minutes of annoyance. Got everything inside and powered it on – and there was no difference. It still had to boot 3 times to finally work, and the error still comes – “Device HDD0 encountered an error during a paging operation” or something like that in Event Viewer.

But now I save power and all 24 pins are properly used? I don’t know.. But I do miss the “Fan Only” variable voltage 4-pin molex connector on my old PSU – it’d autothrottle my case fan based on my current temperature. (For the most part in the past 4 years, it’s been the same speed.) So it was running full speed, really loud.. I just unplugged it and noticed that it made like, 0 difference to my CPU temperature, unlike back when I had an AMD XP – the back case fan was a necessity. I also use 3-4 less watts doing that, and have reduced my desktop to 87-88 W usage idle. That’s like.. the usage of like 2-3 lights added together.

On another note, I freaked out about the Bioengineering midterm that I was going to have on Monday (that I, of course, did not study for – other classes are more important) but it turns out that I had an old copy of the syllabus and he updated it like last week or something.. and both Bioengineering and Biology midterms are next week -_-. Better together than.. apart?