Crazy busy week!

So far this week: 30 hours of research, 15 hours of TA fun (Arduino, woohoo!), 10 hours of getting to hang out with awesome 7th and 8th grade future engineers as a science fair judge, 20 miles of running (plus adding in some strides this week!), and even some fun time downtown with MountainMan & his brother & brother’s girlfriend.  

 

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View from the science fair during pre-judging.  Saw some amazing projects and chatted with some inspiring and creative “baby” engineers 😉  Got to judge a few computer science projects too – these kids could totally kick my butt in the code category.  We had students building catapults, magnetic rail-guns, coming up with awesome Arduino + IR sensor set-ups for teaching elementary school kids about physics, and decoding viral genomes!  So much awesome!

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Going out!  That doesn’t happen too often with the crazy grad-school schedule 😛  Had some great beer , great food, great company, and a lovely walk around downtown.

TAing this week was crazy – we started teaching C, which meant a lot of syntax confusion after months of Matlab.  It didn’t help that we were also switching between DevC++ C and Arduino C…a few crucial differences that were fun to try and explain to our poor confuzzled students.  You know it’s bad when the TA’s themselves are stumbling over the syntax from so much program switching.  The excitement on students’ faces when they got their robots to work made the stress and chaos totally worth it though 🙂  And I love that I have improved my coding skills enough to troubleshoot students’ code while exhausted, distracted, and constantly switching syntax’s 😛  

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Ended the workday today with several hours of trouble-shooting a half-working model.  Didn’t get it figured out, which led to some serious research frustration, but I got to say “adios!” to the lab at 7 and work the frustration out with 3 awesome miles of relaxed striding around campus.  Finished up with some hip & glut work – full of endorphins and ready to head into the weekend!