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15 August 2011 @ 10:26 pm
Or, What I Did on my Summer Vacation

Finished my thesis. Had a paper accepted. Got a beautiful girlfriend. And, today, started my new postdoc.

None of it has been recorded much here. The carefully-crafted work stuff was moved to a dedicated work blog, which I eventually stopped writing for lack of time. Facebook and now Google+ provide a much larger audience for the less-developed thoughts, and the latter has much more precise privacy controls too.

So I think, after seven years, it's time to call it quits for this livejournal account. It is, really, a preposterously long time to maintain a particular sort of online presence, and I think LJ in general is showing its age. So, goodbye, at least to the pages of memories themselves. My readers, I hope, know where else to find me.
06 August 2011 @ 08:23 pm
My mom: [Random actor] is younger than you!
Me: Most people are!

Well, that sounds nice, but is it true? As it turns out, it is, but barely: the CIA World Factbook says the world's median age is 28.4.
18 July 2011 @ 09:20 pm
Kate and I went to see the latest Harry Potter movie in our robes. The Ravenclaw scarf is a relatively last-minute addition, courtesy of my parents' visit to Universal Studios.

16 July 2011 @ 12:38 pm
Now that my dissertation is being read by the committee, I feel a little better about posting my (early) graduation pictures from months ago.

(Click the picture to see the rest of the (public) album on Google+.)
16 June 2011 @ 11:12 am
I wrote a script to figure out which author I am on "my" paper, which has had an official author list assigned now that it's about to circulate to the entire ATLAS collaboration.
counting = False
nauth = 0
ns = -1
for line in open("atlas_authlist_trackjet.tex"):
  if line.count("bigskip"): counting = not counting
  if counting and line.count("^"): nauth += 1
  if line.count("[sethrates]"): ns = nauth
print "There are %i authors, and [Sethrates] is author number %i." % (nauth,ns)

The result:
[Sethrates]-MacBook-Pro:Documents2011 [sethrates]$ python countauthorlist.py
There are 3023 authors, and [Sethrates] is author number 2985.
07 June 2011 @ 09:07 pm
Dear Bruno Mars: Maybe she left you because threatening to cut off your own head is a sign of insanity, not devotion.

Dear Bicyclists: Speaking of death wishes, I know Davis is a bicycle paradise, but have you considered that maybe you should have some goddamn lights if you ride after dark? You should all be cited.
10 May 2011 @ 09:58 pm
Mary, as a mighty huntress, is totally ready to attack her toy in a fearsome manner. Unless it moves too fast. Then discretion is the better part of valor and she has to skitter away.

Baxter is elsewhere.
09 May 2011 @ 09:30 am
I am getting the hang of petting Mary. It is a process that requires tremendous attention, lest she demonstrate her enthusiasm by biting me or accidentally rolling down the stairs.

Baxter is a hazard to navigation.
03 May 2011 @ 03:30 pm
Since paying Pakistan a billion dollars to look for terrorists in Pakistan worked so poorly, why don't we pay India a billion dollars a year to look for terrorists in Pakistan? I'm sure they would be extremely thorough.
29 April 2011 @ 07:38 am
What a day! Every famous person in Britain except Tony Blair and Gordon Brown has just watched what's-his-name, that helicopter pilot, marry Princess Shinyhair Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge. Later, Barack Obama and Gabby Giffords will watch the last space shuttle take AMS into orbit. And yet another postdoc in my group has won a thesis award.