2003-04-30 13:31:38

Easter has come and gone for another year. The lead up to Easter was very, very busy for me. This semester I’ve been charged with creating and preparing two assignments for the fourth year distributed computing subject. On top of that comes marking and lab supervision. I also have to prepare samples for the two assignments.

We left for Caloundra and Fraser Island on Easter Sunday, and that meant I was struggling to get a sample solution finished. So I spent Good Friday and Saturday and a part of Easter Sunday coding. The students had a month to do a solution and I had two and a bit days! It got finished in the end!

Fraser Island was great, but it rained for two out of the three days that we were there. We did the Kingfisher Wilderness tour, and the ranger that took us around the island was fantastic. But next time I do Fraser it will be a proper camping trip I think. We saw a few dingos, but not too much other wildlife while we were there. I think the rain had a bit to do with this.

Ph.D work has been going slow since returning from the Easter break. I’m not feeling very motivated at the moment. Neither is Karen. As such, we’ve been having some strange conversations in the office to fill in time. Without divulging too much detail, the topics ranged from drugs and alcohol to relationships to crazy things we’ve done. Ryan also took part in these conversations. Why were they strange conversations? Well, we don’t talk about this kind of stuff very often in my office, but I hope we continue to do so, while getting some Ph.D work done at the same time. For some reason, I find it difficult to articulate myself to some people, and Karen is one of them. I don’t know why on Earth this should be the case, because I otherwise feel completely relaxed around her. But when I try to explain something to her, whether it be of an academic nature or otherwise, words tend to fail me. It’s stupid, and I often feel like an idiot. I have a feeling this used to happen with Ian at one stage a few years ago, but it doesn’t happen so much now, thankfully. This must be a psychological thing, I think.

Yesterday I participated in an experiment for some HCI students. The students gave me a number of tasks, one at a time, which involved navigating around the UQ library web site. I didn’t realise how badly the library site sucks. It really does. The main problem it suffers from is inconsistency. On some pages the link to go back to the library home page is on the left, and on others it’s at the top near the middle. It was a fun experiment. Netscape crashed midway through, which was amusing. I got two Freddo Frogs for my efforts. Thanks guys :).

Real knocked Man U out of the Champions League, but only just. Having won the first leg 3-1, Real lost the second leg 4-3. It was an absolutely brilliant game. I wish Real and Man U could play each other every week. That leaves only Real Madrid, Inter, AC Milan and Juventus in the competition. Real play Juve in one of the semi-finals and the two Milans battle it out in the other one. The Italian clubs have done well this year, but I don’t think any of them will be able to match it with Real. If they do, it will be a gross injustice. In my opinion the real final was played between Real Madrid and Manchester United, because I’m sure Manchester United would have accounted for all the Italian teams as well. But Madrid do deserve to win it again. Sometimes, it’s hard to turn a team full of stars into a star team, but Real Madrid is playing some really beautiful football, and del Bosque has got all the star players playing for each other. They could so easily have been an expensive flop. Instead they are amazing to watch and are, without doubt, the best club team in the world at the moment.