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Explosive Decompression

Miscellaneous updatery from Banaland:

  • Grading: Well, I finished grading the first assignment in CIS 560 by class time on Thu 27 Apr 2006, and it's as I wrote: instructors' marks are not model solutions, nor are they stack traces, nor even segfault error messages. Sometimes a score is just a score. Let's face it, though: asking for marks is really just a way for some students to ask "where they lost points", which is really just a way to ask for more points. I know whereof I speak: I was neurotically grade-conscious as an undergrad, and while I may arguably have no room to talk about grade-grubbing, I know almost every line in the book, whether it came out of my mouth or someone else's.

  • VOIP: Lycos Phone works from phone to computer, and quite well at that, giving me total of 5 VOIP solutions in addition to my cell phone: iTalkBB for voice-to-voice, SkypeOut for IP-to-voice, Lycos Phone for voice-to-IP, and Skype and Google Talk (plus Lycos and Yahoo) for IP-to-IP.

  • Nanowrimo: Halfway between Nanowrimo 2005 and 2006, 100000 words (and two challenges in), I have finished the first two "books", but I'm not quite satisfied with the turns of events; the last few chapters in particular feel more like a series of vignettes with loose ends, and I'm not sure how to wrap things up for the 2006 sequel.

  • Chat: There is no way in the Eleven Hells I can catch a person who sails in and out of the chat room within 30 seconds; sometimes we go that long between responses during an active conversation.

  • WOW detox: Still wishing World of Warcraft would stop swallowing grad students whole. So, zengeneral, tell me about those withdrawal symptoms!

And how are you all?



( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 7th, 2006 02:55 am (UTC)
A hundred thousand words? Wow. Maybe this sense of shame will be enough to keep me on track this fall...

Still wishing World of Warcraft would stop swallowing grad students whole.

At the rate I'm going, WoW will swallow me before I even get to be a grad student! *sigh*
May. 7th, 2006 03:10 am (UTC)
Nanowrimo and World of Warcraft
100K and counting! I thought it'd be about 70K, and it's looking more like 140K minimum. Well, I have some time to write this summer, but the loose ends are looking a little contrived, which distresses me, because I really was looking forward to the tie-ins between the stories of Feslik, Alinyel, and Perya and the "sequels" (Eloyine and the Time-Skipper, Darvas) that begin a couple of centuries later.

Hey, I get you. When I was an undergrad, I was addicted briefly to CircleMUD and a couple of Sid Meier games, Civilization and Pirates! Later, in grad school, I alloted myself only a couple of weeks of excess with the Coreys' Quest for Glory 4. I stayed away from Warcraft until I defended - and the week after I did, I had a lost week. That is, I defended on 17 Jul 1998, went home and fired up Warcraft to relax a bit, and suddenly found it was 23 Jul 1998.

May. 7th, 2006 05:33 am (UTC)
Re: Nanowrimo and World of Warcraft
Oh, god, MUDs. Someday I will look back on Castle Arcanum and wonder how I could ever have placed so much importance on items consisting of colored text.

I haven't lost weeks to Warcraft yet, but I've lost evenings. Eight-hour evenings. My computer won't support it in any playable fashion, so I have to borrow my boyfriend's laptop. This limits my playing time considerably. ;)
May. 7th, 2006 03:48 am (UTC)
Who me?
"There is no way in the Eleven Hells I can catch a person who sails in and out of the chat room within 30 seconds; sometimes we go that long between responses during an active conversation."

Are you referring to my behavior, or are there other (worse) offenders?
May. 7th, 2006 04:18 am (UTC)
30 seconds
I believe you were one of several, perhaps many, though if I had to guess, your interval is one of the shorter ones. jereeza and nobuddy69 (just to name two) have sailed in and out in less time - I once clocked each of them spending 9 seconds in the chat (and was in the middle of typing a greeting when they departed).

May. 7th, 2006 11:10 am (UTC)
Re: 30 seconds
/me nods.

I apologize.

I try to stay away from the chat room entirely when I'm not prepared to wait for people to notice me, but sometimes I fail.

And sometimes I click the icon by accident at a time when I really don't have time to spend chatting.

I would blame the computer, but it's pure user error.
May. 7th, 2006 04:15 am (UTC)
WOW detox in six easy steps
Step 1: Realizing that WoW is a problem.
If there are forces that put WoW into conflict (such as, grad school and general behavior), then WoW is a problem. If there are no such forces, then WoW is as good as life gets. If WoW is a problem, then Step 2 else Step 6.

Step 2: Dump the account on an unsuspecting fool a friend.

Step 3: Wait until the WoW Twitch goes away (about a week). The WoW twitch consists of WoW popping up from nowhere, visiting the forum, visiting the guild forum, or visiting WoW related sites.

Step 4: Use logic and reasoning to determine what WoW is; CoIP, Crack over IP.

Step 5: Uninstall the WoW client.

Step 6: Enjoy Life

And, that's where I am. I am slightly more bored, but I just turn my attention elsewhere.
May. 7th, 2006 05:31 am (UTC)
As far as grading, my pet peeve is usually that I was asking not because I gave a damn about my grade (oh noes! I lost 3 points out of 100!) but because I genuinely wanted to know where I had gone wrong, so I could improve...and instructors would--instead of telling me--just give me the extra points. Hunh?
May. 7th, 2006 07:21 am (UTC)
Our local library sponsored a Nanowrimo event last November, and I joined for the challenge. I hadn't written anything longer than a theme paper for high school and hadn't done much creative writing since then.

The writing was great fun. I tend to be verbose, so quantity was not an issue. Quality, however, was. I have read several books about writing since then, and I am hopeful that I will have a less odious outcome to this November's novel.

Hope springs eternal, and all that jazz.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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