Wednesday, July 18, 2007

My Linux Success Story

This is my Linux success story. Well, actually not mine because that was long long ago in a galaxy far far away but more of my adviser's. He bought a new desktop computer for his home use and when faced with learning Vista or sticking with XP came to my office and asked about installing Linux on it. At this point, I'm ecstatic with thoughts of seamless transferal of OO.o documents and a return to LaTeX for typesetting his documents.
Being a good member of CLUG it took me all of 2s to decided that our official installfest distro of choice, Ubuntu, was right for him.

After his white box computer arrived I burned an ISO of 7.04 and walked down the hall to get the install going. The live cd aspect of it flawlessly detected all of the hardware on the machine and after answering a few short questions the install was just like imaging a machine.

Post-install, I demonstrated Synaptic to get the Nvidia drivers, LaTeX and added Clemson's repositories for MATLAB and VPN software. I also installed the LaTeX plugin for Gedit which really ought to be packaged in Universe (hint hint).

Due to the short interval before the conference, I couldn't convince him to use Impress or LaTeX for his presentation, but he did generate his figures with OO.o Draw. He really likes what he sees and can't understand why anyone would need Windows. Maybe when we get back from Ottawa I'll get to install it on his main machine.

Cheers to the Ubuntu guys for making the install so painless and all of my favorite Gnomies for keeping the desktop rocking!

Sunday, July 15, 2007


I'm sorry that I won't be joining all of you in Birmingham this week as I am in the final stages of preparing for a conference in Ottawa next week. I'm even sorrier that I'm missing the chance to meet my SoC student, Pinar.
She should be at GUADEC, so everyone be very friendly and let her know "Don't Panic."

If any of you are in the Ottawa area next week and want to join up, Hub and I are having a beer BoF meet up at some point you're more than welcome to get in on. Just let one of us know.

Also, I'm up for key signing, impromptu or otherwise, while I'm visiting our great white neighbor to the north.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Research Update

Sadly, there hasn't been much coding of late. I'm no longer blocking on my professor and am working at full speed to get ready for URSI USNC in Ottawa at the end of the month. After struggling with derivatives of Legendre functions, I managed to blitz through a good bit of analysis this afternoon. Hooray! This made up the bulk of the work for one of three papers my prof and I are presenting. The shop has finished 2 out of the 3 prolate spheroids I needed to make measurements and hopefully I will receive the third tomorrow. Making my calibration measurements went well, but I did have to cannibalize a dry cleaning clothes hanger to make a Teflon plug puller. It turns out that no matter how slick you think Teflon is if you have enough surface area friction matters.

List of things to complete in time for the Conference:
  • Prolate Spheroidal Monopole Measurements
  • Comparison of calculated input admittance to measured
  • Rayleigh Series Quasi-static Analysis and comparison to measurements
  • Elliptic channel with PEC cylinder code
  • Elliptic channel figures
It is quite the list but finishing the first three items will satisfy all of the non-writing work needed to finish my masters. Let us all hope I survive to make it to Ottawa!