Yes, I Still Exist

Hello loyal readers (yes I mean you Naomi).

I’ve been rather quiet over the past… year. I’d like to say that it is because I’ve been terribly busy building record breaking Rubik’s Cube robots but it’s mostly because I’ve been terribly lazy, taken up World of Warcraft (I’m sure the fact that that happened a year ago has nothing to do with it), and I’ve not really gotten around to it.

So, while I’m here, a quick update.

I never ended up doing the half-marathon last year as I managed to sprain my ankle in training and I’ve not really gotten back into running since. This is something I plan to fix once this blasted semester is over.

I’ve continued my love of snowboarding despite breaking my back after attempting a jump I really shouldn’t have (only a compression fracture in a few vertebrae mind). Since the accident I’ve fully recovered and gone on to tackle black runs in Falls Creak and Hakuba, Japan.

I completed my final year project with great success, only a few sleepless nights and just the one major argument amongst the team that threatened to derail the project. The outcome of the project was a Rubik’s Cube solving robot called Ruby that is a strong contender for a world record.

In the meantime I’ve been studying, working, tutoring Database Analysis and Design and playing WoW. The combination of these four have kept me pretty busy.

I’m now in exams for my final semester, I have a graduate job lined up at Deloitte Online and I’m pretty excited to put uni behind me for a while and venture out into the big bad world!

So, now that everyone is up to speed. I’ll see whether I can get back into this blogging thing 🙂

Great Ocean Road Half-Marathon

13-Half-marathon-runners

On the 16th May I am planning to run the Great Ocean Road Half-Marathon. The GOR Half-Marathon is actually 23km long (rather than the usual 21.1) so it could more accurately be called the Great Ocean Road 54.5% Marathon and I plan to spend the last 1.9km swearing and shaking my fists at the organisers for prolonging my torture.

When I did my first half-marathon (at the Melbourne Marathon) I was woefully unprepared (I didn’t run for 3 weeks before the race) and very, very slow. This time, I’ve seen the course, I know EXACTLY how far a half-marathon is, and as I couldn’t help but notice that the Great Ocean Road was a little hilly I know that this time I need to train. So, since last week marked 18 weeks until the marathon I have started my training. [Edit: this is the part where I admit that I wrote this first bit on the 21st January and never got around to finishing it]

I have decided to go for the FIRST (Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training) Half-Marathon Training schedule which involves three runs a week as I have no intention of running 5 days a week. The first run is interval training (speed work), the second run is a mid-distance/speed tempo run, and the third is a slower long run. This running schedule is then supported by cross-training and strength work on the non-running days. [Edit: thus ends the bit I wrote on the 21st]

I’ve now been training for this race for 7 weeks or so. I’ve averaged more like 2 runs a week, but I’m still going way better than last time, and on Saturday last week a ran 15km only 10s a km slower than my goal pace despite falling over and smacking my knee once and falling over and spraining my ankle later in the run. It’s early days but I think I’m on track for a goal time of 2hrs 30min on race day.

Wish me luck!

101 Goals in 1001 Days – 2009

2009 is well and truely over and this occasion calls for a 101 Goals update.

Completed Goals

8. Read 1984 and Animal Farm (2/2)

13. Give blood

14. Attend a family Christmas

16. Cook a 3 course meal for a friend

22. Visit Dad in Canberra

28v2. Run a half-marathon in the melbourne marathon

40. Organise all my files on both computers and ext hard drive (3/3)

41. Own 5 pieces of jewellery that I love (5/5)

42. Remove all ipod tracks I don’t like

51. Go indoor rock climbing

52. Go to Melbourne museum

53. Go to Moonlight cinema

54. Go to the art gallery

55. Organise, prepare food for and go on a picnic

56. See 25 greatest films as voted by IMDB (25/25)

66. Do makeup every morning for a month (30/30)

73. Complete a 4km race

74. Complete an 8km race

75. Do 25 consecutive men’s’ push-ups (best 25/25)

78. Finish in the top 50% in a 4km run

81. Average over 80 in uni classes

82. Do career relevant work

84. Get a high distinction

86. Get above 90% on 5 assignments/tests (5/5)

94. Go to the gold coast to visit Victoria

99. Go overseas

101. See a Cirque Du Soleil show

So that’s 27/101 goals complete. May need to speed up a little!

Goals in Progress

1. Create photo tour of my workspace for blog

4. Upload 250 photos to flickr (139/250)

9. Read 50 non-fiction books (10/50)

  • Anais Ninn’s In Favour of the Sensitive Man and Other Essays
  • 6 Impossible Things Before Breakfast: The Evolutionary Origins of Belief, Lewis Wolpert
  • Moral Minds: How Nature Designed Our Universal Sense of Right and Wrong, Marc Hauser
  • The Ghost Map, Steven Johnston
  • The Book of Dead Philosophers, Simon Critchley
  • The Zookeepers Wife, Diane Ackerman
  • 1788, Watkin Tench
  • The Stuff of Thought, Steven Pinker
  • How to Become a Straight A Student, Cal Newport
  • The Brain that Changes Itself, Norman Doidge

11. Read a book by Dostoevesky

17. Give 10 unexpected gifts (2/10)

20. Put all birthdays and anniversaries in my calendar

26. Get new glasses

27. Go to 25 spin classes (6/25)

30. Go to 5 conferences/unconferences (2/5)

33. Do 5 brutal cleanouts of unnecessary clutter (1/5)

43. Sell/give away all clothing that I don’t love

46. Try 50 new recipes (20/50)

47. Watch the sun rise 10 times (2/10)

50. Go camping 5 times (2/5)

58. Write monthly updates of 101 progress (10/33)

59. Maintain a monthly closing balance of $0 on credit card (6/33)

65. Do a weekly review every week for a year (0/52)

67. Dress up at least once a month (5/33)

72. Create blog template

90. Build an emergency fund of 2 months pay

92. Go on a girly trip with my best friend

95. Go to the snow with my sister

22/101 goals in progress. That leaves 52 goals that I haven’t even started…

101 Goals – A Belated Update

I know, I know, updates and all that!

Goals I’ve Completed

28v2. Run a half-marathon in the melbourne marathon

41. Own 5 pieces of jewellery that I love (5/5)

99. Go overseas

Goals in Progress

27. Go to 25 spin classes (4/25)

92. Go on a girly trip with my best friend

94. Go to the gold coast to visit Victoria

95. Go to the snow with my sister

101 Goals in 1001 Days – A Year (and a bit) In

I’ve been having a bit of a fail with these monthly updates so I decided the best way to catch up was to post a 101 goals in 1001 days, one year in update. Unfortunately it’s been a little over a year since I started but I’m not one to let silly details like that get in the way.

So far the 101 goals in 1001 days lark has been really fun. It’s given me a kick in the butt to get things done that I’ve been meaning to do for ages and never got around to as well as helping me to improve some bad habits. There are some goals that I’ve already strictly speaking failed but I’ll still continue to work on them in the spirit of self-improvement.

So, on to the goals…

Goals I’ve Completed

8. Read 1984 and Animal Farm (2/2)
13. Give blood
14. Attend a family Christmas
16. Cook a 3 course meal for a friend
22. Visit Dad in Canberra
40. Organise all my files on both computers and ext hard drive (3/3)
42. Remove all ipod tracks I don’t like
51. Go indoor rock climbing
52. Go to Melbourne museum
53. Go to Moonlight cinema
54. Go to the art gallery
55. Organise, prepare food for and go on a picnic
56. See 25 greatest films as voted by IMDB (25/25)
66. Do makeup every morning for a month (30/30)
73. Complete a 4km race
74. Complete an 8km race
75. Do 25 consecutive men’s’ push-ups (best 25/25)
78. Finish in the top 50% in a 4km run
81. Average over 80 in uni classes
82. Do career relevant work
84. Get a high distinction
86. Get above 90% on 5 assignments/tests (5/5)
101. See a Cirque Du Soleil show

So that makes 23 goals completed out of 101.

Goals in Progress

4. Upload 250 photos to flickr (65/250)
9. Read 50 non-fiction books (7/50)

  • Anais Ninn’s In Favour of the Sensitive Man and Other Essays
  • 6 Impossible Things Before Breakfast: The Evolutionary Origins of Belief, Lewis Wolpert
  • Moral Minds: How Nature Designed Our Universal Sense of Right and Wrong, Marc Hauser
  • The Ghost Map, Steven Johnston
  • The Book of Dead Philosophers, Simon Critchley
  • The Zookeepers Wife, Diane Ackerman
  • 1788, Watkin Tench

17. Give 10 unexpected gifts (2/10)
20. Put all birthdays and anniversaries in my calendar
27. Go to 25 spin classes (2/25)
28v2. Run a half-marathon in the melbourne marathon
30. Go to 5 conferences/unconferences (2/5)
33. Do 5 brutal cleanouts of unnecessary clutter (1/5)
41. Own 5 pieces of jewellery that I love (2/5)
46. Try 50 new recipes (9/50)
47. Watch the sun rise 10 times (2/10)
50. Go camping 5 times (2/5)
58. Write monthly updates of 101 progress (8/33)
59. Maintain a monthly closing balance of $0 on credit card (6/33)
65. Do a weekly review every week for a year (0/52)
67. Dress up at least once a month (5/33)
72. Create blog template
90. Build an emergency fund of 2 months pay
99. Go overseas

So there we have it. My 101 goals in 1001 days, one year in.

HET225 (Electrical Machines) and HET228 (Electrical Actuators and Sensors) Notes

I’m doing Electrical Actuators and Sensors again this semester after very sensibly deciding to fail last time.

As the lecturer has been saying that he’ll try to put something up on blackboard for at least 3 years I don’t hold a lot of hope. As a result I am publishing the notes that I take in class so that any students who miss a class for whatever reason can catch up.

I should add that I’m a much better student now than I was 3 years ago when I failed. My notes will be accurate to what is on the board and also contain annotations from what is said in class 🙂

You can find these notes by clicking on the HET225 & HET228 Notes tab.  I will try to stay as up to date as possible.