This is an index over all available pages ordered by namespaces.
############################### THESIS TIME ############################### [This email is an update. If you haven't got one from me before you'll find I write them about four times a year. Please email me to opt-out or opt-in, I'm not very methodical about updating the list of people I email this to!] So when I last wrote you I was in New Zealand and loving it. And then Eyjafjallajökull erupted, the volcano-which-can-not-be-pronounced and (which rumour had it) was going to continue erupting until everyone could actually say its name. Hmmm. The backlog of other cancelled travellers also meant that, if my flight had been cancelled, I would have had to wait for at least 2 weeks after they restarted before I could get a seat. Double hmmm. I was extremely lucky though, and my booked flight was about the first from NZ that made it to the UK. Admittedly, if I had been stuck in the New Zealand I would have just done a lot more body surfing and sun bathing, but I wouldn't have got much work done. Also, I would have missed the college ball and meeting Katie. Plusses and minuses. The DPhil charges on. I'll have a good draft by the end of the month, and I had my internal "confirmation viva" a couple of weeks ago. That was extremely useful, lots of feedback and guidance, although the examiners thought my timetable (submission by 1/9/10) was a bit aggressive. That date is still my goal, but it'd be foolish to submit something flakey if more time would make it stronger. Let's see how it goes. Right now though the thesis seems in reasonably good shape. Some friends are very kindly reading over the background chapters to make sure I didn't faff anything really obvious, and I'm going to have one more detailed round of feedback with Vasile, but the end is just about in sight. Chapters 4-6 seem to be begging for the coup de grace and chapter 7 is quavering alone. This makes me happy - it's been fairly long hours for the last month or two and a lack of progress would be a bit frustrating. I went to jitsu for the first time in weeks last Wednesday, and I've got a new-found appreciation for the birds singing too. Because it's much more depressing when you realise they've stopped and you still haven't gone to bed... Haha, poor me. Life is so tough. Talking of life being so tough, I'll be on holiday all the coming week. Cornwall, I can't wait. Admittedly I'll have some work with me, but not too much. Katie has promised swimming in the sea, especially if it rains, sailing on the river and maybe a night or two camping on the moors. Anyone who's seen me on a boat before is probably already sending their condolences to my family, but I'm sure that this time it will go well and that the boat will stay the right way up. Back to my fascinating thesis. Part of the preparation for submission and the viva is some background reading, to make sure I'm familiar with the wider field. About 3397 pages worth. Thank you Amazon. Thank you very much. I may skip some pages. Moaning aside, writing my thesis means I really have a new appreciation for textbook authors and just how hard writing long documents is - those authors deserve every one of the many pennies they earn! I'm also reading a bit of Stephen Few. I got his books for my thesis, but I think also they'll be pretty useful for me when I'm crafting decks for BCG, and I'd really recommend both "Show Me the Numbers" and "Now You See It". David McCandless's blog "Information is Beautiful" is interesting too. I especially like: http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/when-sea-levels-attack/ Overall his work seems a bit hit and miss to me, but gems of brilliance are scattered everywhere. For example, I've attached a snippet (D) of an otherwise unimpressive example on air disaster. The snippet doesn't say much, but it is interesting and the presentation perfectly amplifies the point. Enough seriousness. How about some BP? Both of these are hilarious: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2AAa0gd7ClM http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mSujCHfvTb0 Anyway, life's all gone a bit hectic and the other photos are pretty straight-forward. The next one of these emails will come post-submission, be longer, better written and talk about me doing much more interesting stuff than my thesis. Till then. FINIS