Older blog entries for bgeiger (starting at number 166)

Sheesh, it's been over a month.
The trip went well. Got to watch Josh graduate from high school, but I didn't run into some people I was really hoping to meet with again. I ended up staying in Georgia an extra week.
Absolutely no progress... mainly because I've been out of state for quite a while. There are a few things I'd like to rewrite, but I've been too busy and/or lazy to do so.
While up in Georgia, I found a movie that I had bought on my last trip: Angus. I finally got around to watching it again today. I find hope in that movie; it tells me that no matter how bad things get, it may be possible to turn even the cruelest situation into a beneficial one.
I'm still trying to find an affordable, regulation-size Go board. My small Korean set is usable, but the stones feel a bit flimsy.
I'm tempted to sell or donate my queen-size bed (it came with the house) and get a twin-size bed, or even a futon. I need more room in my room.
it's like glass, when we break, i wish no one in my place
Grades are back.

Data Structures (EEL 4851): A.
English Composition 2 (ENC 1102): B.

dink and go
Progress on dink is creeping along. I think I have the easy part done. Now, to the part I have trouble with: interaction with users. Not only do I have to figure out what is needed, but I also have to learn networking (something new to me) and probably write my own SGF library, too.

I have more and more respect for Bill Shubert with each line of code I write.

Meanwhile, on the real KGS, I'm still bouncing between 22k and 24k, though I think I'm overrated; I barely play, and I still get stomped by most everybody. It's a cycle: when I play, I get stomped, which discourages me, which makes me play less, which makes me worse, which makes me get stomped worse...

Still trying to get ahold of PowerJapanese. Still drilling myself on kana. Still frustrated at my lack of progress.
I've decided to start eating healthy again. Today was a miserable failure; I had 4 McDonalds cheeseburgers. In a row. But dammit, they were cheap!

Anyway, eventually I'll start eating healthy again. Maybe tomorrow.

Going to visit Mom and Josh again. I promised Josh I'd make it up there to see him graduate from high school... after all, he did watch me graduate from college... twice.

I'm gonna get all spiffed up for the ceremony (dress code is casual... most people there will be wearing jeans). After all, I want to be able to have them look at me and have an implied raspberry: "I'm doing better than you are! Nyah nyah!"

Too bad most of them will probably earn more chasing chickens than I will working in the computer field, these days...

they say freak when you're singled out
raph: Ah, at least I'm not the only one here who enjoys Hikaru no Go (SenseisLibrary:HikaruNoGo). I'm up to episode 18. and getting them gradually, about 2 days per episode. (Dialup is the suck.) I haven't seen the Naruto anime, but I don't really like the manga.

I agree, though, that fansubbers do a good job. I can't complain about the HnG episodes I've seen; everything seems right on cue, and it all makes sense. The only problem I've found is that subtitles conflict with my usual style: I typically don't watch the screen often, focusing more on the sound and speech. However, since I don't know Japanese...

My KGS rating continues to creep upward, even though I've been too busy and/or distracted to play recently; however, when I do play, it shoots downward like a rock. I gave 4 stones to a 26k and lost; it knocked me down to 23k.
More and more progress. It's more work than I expected.

Right now, I have a mostly-functioning board. I can place stones (and automatically strip stones with no liberties) and count score, mostly.

I'm still trying to figure out how to handle eyes in seki. If I want to follow the Japanese rules, I need to handle this. Of course, few other servers do the same, so it may be something I can get away with ignoring.

I've been taking St. John's Wort for a few days. Incredibly enough, although I haven't felt much of an effect, I've noticed a change in my behavior. I even cleaned up my room, for crying out loud; I don't think I've done that in the two years I've lived here.
I've been listening to country music.

And liking it.

Somebody shoot me now.

o/~ leaving home was the hardest thing we ever faced o/~ -- alabama, "high cotton"
I'm nervous. I bombed the final in Data Structures, and $DEITY knows what's going on with English. Here's hoping.
Still playing, still learning. Trying to figure out why I get stomped so badly so often.
It seems like I'm hitting the hardest obstacle first, with dink. It's tricky to represent a go board in any language (even though it sounds simple), but Python seems to make it particularly crazy. That's just for the game itself; I haven't even begun to think about the aspects of KGS that make it so great, like its advanced facilities for teaching games. In fact, I haven't thought about much, other than the very basic game mechanics (how to place a stone, capture stones, count score...).

Lots of semi-sophisticated design decisions required here. I guess there's no better way to learn than by doing, but I wish there were something I could work from...

There's a chance I could be going to Georgia this month; my brother Josh graduates from high school on the 30th. I'm really hoping to make it there for his graduation, after all, he did come to both of mine...
Lots of birthdays these days. I completely forgot my dad's, yesterday; Josh's is on the 3rd, and Tamie's is the 7th. I don't have anything for Josh yet, but I'll probably get him [censored because he might read this, I'll fill in later].

I honestly have no idea what to get for Tamie. This is where lack of social knowledge and intuition hits hard: I don't know how to choose an appropriate gift. I guess I'll just have to take my chances.

o/~ i know it sounds absurd, but please tell me who i am... o/~ -- supertramp, "the logical song"
14 Apr 2003 (updated 14 Apr 2003 at 23:03 UTC) »
Still running behind in English class, but I'm gradually catching up.

Data Structures is tough, but still boring. I've taken to watching Hikaru no Go (SenseisLibrary:HikaruNoGo) in class. An advantage of subtitles: you don't need audio to know what's going on.

Been playing on KGS lately (username "Phoon"); it's partly for the company and partly for research for dink.

KGS thinks I'm 23 kyu. A bit advanced, maybe, but roughly accurate... it's mid-beginner level.

Not much progress yet; I haven't had any study resources. Lately, though, I've been using flashcards to drill myself on kana.
Played DDR a few days ago, on the 1st Mix in DisneyQuest. I ended up with four large blisters.

I am seriously out of shape.

Remember that people shouldn't be rated purely on the contents of their diaries. If mglazer contributes to the open source community, then rate him as appropriate.

I have his diary rated at 1, and I suggest everyone else do likewise. It's not worth losing people over.

did you know me?
or were you too preoccupied,
playing king in your own kingdom?
but now the real world
has stripped you of your royalty,
and from your kingdom you're evicted...
     -- hoobastank, "remember me"

2 Apr 2003 (updated 6 Apr 2003 at 19:36 UTC) »
Let me try this: SenseisLibrary:BenjaminGeiger;

That should lead to my page on Sensei's Library.

Well, it's broken... (Hmm... fixed now that raph updated the intermap...)

I'm up to my ass in schoolwork. Since dealing with all of the random garbage involved with Grandma's death, I haven't had time to sit down and slog through my English work. (I tend to come up with code while on the run anyway, so Data Structures hasn't suffered too horribly much. Besides, the homework in that class is banal.)
Still more thinking than code. Had to come up with algorithms for scoring games that take into account things like eyes in seki (with Japanese rules, groups in seki aren't considered alive, and therefore cannot surround territory). The most basic parts elude me, however... basic ideas of how to represent a point, a move, a game...
I'm addicted to Hikaru no Go. I've been downloading episodes at the rate of about one per day, which isn't bad for dialup.
Watashi wa nihongo ga wakarimasen.
go and the car
Had a meeting Monday. I got whooped by one of the stronger players of the club. Even with a 9 stone handicap, I lost by 120 moku. Next Monday, we're going to go over the game, and he'll try to teach me enough to not lose that badly.

After the meeting, I walked out to my car to find a note tucked into the rubber on the window. It had the license plate number of the truck that hit my car. I didn't see the damage, since it was the passenger side of the car, and that side was facing away from the building.

Anyway, the rear passenger taillight assembly is broken, the right rear quarter panel is cracked (so much for "dent resistant panels") and the tailgate has a big scrape. Progressive estimated the damage at like $800, and we have a $500 deductible.

o/~ i take a look at my enormous penis, and my troubles start melting away... o/~ -- da vinci's notebook, "enormous penis"

bad news
My grandma died Monday.
I'm starting work on a Python-based go server, meant to emulate the general operation of KGS. I even have a name picked out: "Dink". Yes, it's recursive.

I realized a limitation in either Python or my thought processes. In C, I could have:

struct Point points[boardsize][boardsize];
but I have no idea how to do the equivalent in Python. The closest I've come is:
points = [[Point() for x in range(boardsize)] for y in range(boardsize)]
But then I have to go through each and set their neighbors appropriately...
Very little since my last entry. I've been thinking about the game more than playing it.
Considering learning Japanese. I know it's difficult, but I think I'm up to the challenge.
o/~ (internet porn...) girl on girl on girl on girl on girl on guy on sheep o/~ -- da vinci's notebook, "internet porn"
18 Mar 2003 (updated 19 Mar 2003 at 03:56 UTC) »
computer go boom
My Wintendo didn't quite go "boom"; it just sorta screeched to a halt and refused to boot back up.

When I opened the case, I saw that there was a burnt component on the video card. So, Dad got me a new card as a birthday gift. It didn't work.

Since that wasn't the problem, I started inspecting in more depth, eventually noticing some burnt dust in the vicinity of the northbridge. Dad was the one who made the critical observation, though: "Shouldn't that fan turn freely?"

Yep, you guessed it. The fan had accumulated so much dust that it could no longer turn, and the chip fried. So, a new motherboard (and rounded cables and an additional case fan, for good measure) later, I have a functioning Wintendo.

12 March was my 21st birthday. Here in the US, that means the government thinks I'm mature enough to get slobbering drunk.

Suffice it to say, I'm mature enough not to get slobbering drunk, although I did have a drink. (One.)

I spent the afternoon at Disney World, then the night at Pleasure Island. (I spent the morning tracking down the video card; see above.)

One of the slogans of the Adventurer's Club is, "We're funny when you're sober; we're freakin' hilarious when you're drunk."

Amen to that.

4am: Why not try PyDDR?

I definitely need to start doing DDR again; I've lost much of my dance-fu (especially stamina).

It took me an hour and a half to get there, but I went to a meeting of Go Orlando. I watched a lot of go, but only played one game, against another beginner. (I won by a landslide, but I can't say that would happen again; he greatly improved over the course of that single game.)

Funniest moment of the night: one of the experienced players mentioned the "monkey jump". A few moments later, I was discussing "stupid things to say to fast food people"... in an absolute deadpan (since I didn't realize it) I said:

"Excuse me, do you take Hawaiian monkey?"
Silence. Then, "Monkey?"

I guess you had to be there.

what happened next, i don't know
i loosened my kimono
and made a noise like the voice of yoko ono
then just like that, right on the mat
me sicky icky yucky sushi
o/~ -- pat donohue, "sushi-yucky"
2 Mar 2003 (updated 2 Mar 2003 at 06:55 UTC) »
long time
Almost 3 weeks without an update? Gah.
My 21st birthday is coming up in just under 2 weeks (12 March). I plan on spending the day in one (or more) of the Walt Disney World parks, then the evening at the Adventurers' Club. If you're in the area and want to watch me get plastered for the first time, just let me know.
I've been reading. I've been playing. I've been getting beaten into a bloody pulp.

So far, I've won 2 honest games, on a 9x9 board, against other beginners. This is to be expected.

Most people I've played have been helpful... but some have been real pains. People should have the common courtesy to discuss a game, especially if they won it. Instead, I get "thxbye" and they quit.

I've been playing online, on NNGS, with username "tanuki". However, I did manage to find a decent board. I had to go to a local Korean grocery store; the stones have an approximately 2mm smaller diameter than "normal", but the board is sized appropriately for them. It ended up costing me around $40 for the whole thing, after having to buy a second set of stones: there were only 140 white stones in the initial set, and only about 160 black ones.

Data Structures: As an extra credit assignment, we are supposed to implement a 2-3 tree (a B+ tree of order 3). I asked whether a red-black tree was considered to be a B-tree (Bayer called them "symmetric binary B-trees"), but apparently my professor has never heard of them.

This is ugly. Uh-Glee. As in Not Pretty.

Composition 2: I got my first paper back: I got an A. Also, the professor asked me for two favors:

  1. To use my paper as an example of an outstanding paper for her future classes. I'm going to let her, I think.
  2. To cite my paper as a source in her masters' thesis. I'll probably let her do this, too. (This one involves some sort of permission form or release.)

It's still a lot of work.

Some stuff for class, but nothing open source, yet.

I'm tempted to write a NNGS client, in Python/Pygame. I need something I can throw onto a Zip disk and have it work on a Winblows machine without having to install anything. I can do that with Pygame and py2exe.

head case
I'm still trying to figure out if I really have Asperger's Syndrome, or if all of my symptoms can be adequately explained by, say, ADD. (I have been clinically diagnosed with ADD (non-hyperactive), but this was in the ADD heyday, before AS really entered the public eye.)
solid heat
I went to Publix (a grocery store) and bought some sliced jalapeños. Not knowing their density, I bought a pound of them.

It was about five times what I planned on getting, but for about $2.50, I couldn't complain.

So, I brought them home, and tried eating them straight out of the tub. Those SOBs are HOT! (Let me explain something here. I can drink Tabasco straight out of the bottle. I use Dave's Insanity Sauce when cooking. Heat isn't something that usually bothers me.) I could barely breathe after eating about 10-12 slices.

Suffice it to say, the peppers also got their revenge. I won't say any more about this, except to note that this has never happened before, not even after using too much Insanity Sauce.

o/~ save me from the nothing i've become o/~ -- evanescence, "bring me to life"
13 Feb 2003 (updated 14 Feb 2003 at 10:50 UTC) »
The more I read about Asperger's Syndrome, the more the label fits. All sorts of little quirks --- things I've always done that I just thought were because I'm just weird --- turn out to be common to AS sufferers, and a few even turn out to be defining factors.

Granted, I'm a mild case, but it's nice having a name to associate with my symptoms. Besides, it helps employers, coworkers, and friends to understand just what's messed up in my head, and reduces the "you're making it all up" factor.

Great... I've been hooked by the go bug.

You know, go might catch on a lot more quickly if it were easier to find the equipment. I'm not talking about kaya boards and slate and shell stones (not that I could afford it)... even a cardboard board and plastic pieces would be sufficient.... and I haven't even found those for less than $30 or so, on the Net. None of the N stores I've been to have anything resembling go... and when I try to describe it: "Oh, you must mean Othello/Reversi."

I'm seriously tempted to make my own board and stones. For a board, I can just put lines on a piece of plywood, but the stones will be a bit more difficult; it's hard to find suitable pieces, and the fact that you need 361 of them (181 black, 180 white, for a full set) makes it harder.

Not only that, but nobody around here seems to play... maybe this is due to the lack of equipment, which is (in part) due to the lack of players... ad nauseam.

Maybe I can convince some of the local chess players to try something new. If not, there's a go club on the other side of Orlando, about an hour away.

Update: I finally found a go set. It's a pocket-games type of game, magnetic. 19x19 in about 8 inches square. And to get it, I had to go all the way to Japan... Epcot's Japan pavilion, anyway.

gnome 2.2
Pretty damn good. Thanks to everyone who made this fine environment.
The TA for my Data Structures class is incompetent. Worse, he has no taste.

For example, he's been docking people 5-10 points for not having a "divider line" between functions in a C source file. (No, the top-of-function comment doesn't count.) Instead, I just put every function into a separate file, even though this means I have 19 source files for a simple assignment.

He also docked me 5 points for having a single goto in a source file, even though it's used to break out of three nested loops.

To annoy him, I've been doing various things, like liberally sprinkling my comments and debugging output with profanity.

o/~ i never thought i'd die alone, i laughed the loudest, who'd have known? o/~ --- blink 182, "adam's song"

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