Thursday, September 30, 2004

super busy week!

It's been a super busy week here, so I'm sorry for the lack of posts. We're doing a study at work and it's taking a ton of my time in the evenings...and I had an MIT Club of Chicago board meeting last night downtown. Not much else new around here though...had a fun dinner with Stacie and then helped her pick out a wedding gift at Crate and Barrel. PF Changs of course for dinner...where else would we go? We like to think of it as just knowing what we like, not being stuck in a rut ;)

Tomorrow I'm off to Boston!! Which is scary because I am so not no clean clothes not ready. But I'll figure it out! I'm *so* excited to see a bunch of really great friends that I haven't seen in a long time. It's weird to think of visiting SusanT in Boston...for some reason I haven't associated the two yet!

Well, I should get off to work! Probably won't post again until Monday, so have a great weekend everyone!!! And to those in Boston, I'll see you soon!!!


Sunday, September 26, 2004

person we don't speak of...

person 1 that we don't speak of is living 6 blocks away from me. this ought to be an interesting year. person 2 that we don't speak of (aka to susan and lauraf as 'the bitch') supposedly is moving to evanston in the spring. I think I need to move! ;) at least with person 1 it's not me that has a problem with talking, it's her. Honestly, I'm super-glad she came back to Northwestern. She's way to smart to ruin herself at Louisville.


party in the suburbs, alice, and a nice relaxing evening

Fun party out in the suburbs with work people last night! Yes, fun and suburbs in the same sentence!! Made me think again about what suburban life is like. Maybe someday in my life that won't be quite so bad. Someday...but totally not soon :)

Today was fulled with Neofuturist fun! Lauraf and I went down to see Alice (a walking tour of Andersonville with acts loosely based on Alice in Wonderland on the way). Very very fun!!! I love the Neofuturists!! And fun to get to hang out with laura!! We've both been so busy lately! I'm glad I watched the movie with Stacie last weekend least I knew what was going on in the acts :) :) It had been like 15 years since I had seen it!

I was thinking about heading out to Willow Creek tonight to hang out with Stacie and see Mr. T (Mr T the A Team dude from the 80s, not like the high school teacher). :) But the more I thought about it, the more I remember how much that place scares me. It's a lot of the reason Laurap and I stopped going to BWC back in 2001. (Wow...2001??!!??!) Anyway, I honestly believe that too much of anything is a bad thing...and to be around people who are just so...what's the word...maybe obsessed...with God and make every little decision based on what they think He wants for their life just seems a bit crazy to me. It's like, um, what's that thing on top of your neck. He wouldn't have given it to you if you were to be his slave through life.

So instead of heading out there, I went and bought a rice cooker and made an awesome stir fry for myself! Had some chocolate soy milk and fruit, lit a few candles, and turned on Rhapsody to some nice relaxing music. It's just really nice to get to relax once in a while. I don't do it nearly enough!


Thursday, September 23, 2004

google genius

The people at google are sharp! They put a copy of the GLAT (Google Labs Aptitude Test) in every issue of tech review! Meaning that every MIT alum ever now has it. Genius I tell you, pure genius!


chuck vest at sears...

no no no...not like the sears at the mall, sears tower!! :) Last night the MIT Club of Chicago had a big reception for Chuck Vest (the outgoing president of MIT) up on the 66th floor of the Sears Tower. Pretty darn neat....from the views of the lake and city to the tons and tons of people that showed up! Got to see a bunch of the chicago young alums which was great and I learned that maybe I don't really dislike chuck as much as I thought.

Sure he totally disregarded MIT culture and put the fate of a lot of FSILGs in danger, but he also did a lot of good things for the institute in making our endowment go from 1B to 6B over 14 years, starting Open Course Ware so people all over the world can get access to the materials for all of our classes at MIT, and admitting that women at MIT were being treated unfairly and working really hard to overcome that (with the ultimate end of hiring a woman to replace him as president!!). So maybe he's not all bad. He's big into sustainability too which I didn't know.

Anyway, a fun night for sure which ended with Chipotle on Michigan Ave :) mmmmm


Monday, September 20, 2004

retro phones

It's cool when people you know are in the NYT. Go Ali and his old-style cell phone handset!!


save pi/2 percent at amazon!!

If you do a seach on a9 and then go to, there will be a link to save pi/2 percent up at the top of the page. Then you'll get 1.57 percent off of everything you buy!

Nerdy, yes. Cool, yes :) Amazon is cool!

Thanks Hesky for the info!


Sunday, September 19, 2004

give me an m, give me an a, give me an s.....

what's that spell....massachusetts institute of technology!!! :)

So yes, MIT info session yesterday went awesomely well. Man, everytime I hear about MIT I wish I could just start all over and apply again. The level at which they talk about doing and learning truly just amazes me every time. "If you want to do something, you can do it" is totally the attitude. I thought it was very cool how much of the presentation was spent talking about both the architecture department (that only has 75 students in it!) and the architecture of MIT itself. It really does show some of Marilee Jones' thoughts of changing students. But it also shows what's expected now in top research environments. They made sure to make a point of all the places for informal interactions and ad hoc meeting/studying spaces. The interesting shapes of the Gehry building or the "sponge" that are meant to stimulate creativity. The way you can knock down the wall of your dorm room in EC or put a fish tank in your wall or do just about whatever you need to do in order to be your very best. I got to field a bunch of questions about research and FSILGs so that was fun :) They even invited me back to another session today! So in a few short hours I'll be off to another session downtown! So much fun! I love MIT!! :) :) :) Oh, and I love how they call the furniture in the sponge "ikea-like" :)

Last night was tons of fun too! Cooking up stir fry with stacie and finally getting to see Finding Nemo. :) Good friends really rock :-D


Saturday, September 18, 2004

What I'm listening to...

"Great Escape" - Guster
"Amsterdam" - Guster
"Happier" - Guster
"American Pie" - Don McLean
"Mr. Jones" - Counting Crows
"Omaha" - Counting Crows
"The Old Apartment" - Barenaked Ladies
"Perfect" - Alanis Morissette
"Love Song" - 311
"You've Got A Friend" - James Taylor
"Soak Up The Sun" - Sheryl Crow
"Change Your Mind" - Sister Hazel
"A Sorta Fairytale" - Tori Amos
"Beautiful Day" - U2

Click here if you have Rhapsody


lots of random stuff

So I just found out (due to the great powers of google) that this girl I had a huge crush on for a few months back at MIT is married and has a kid now!! Yikes. Are we really getting that old? So many of my friends either got married this year or are getting married next year. And I guess I can *maybe* see getting married at our ages...but's just astounding to me!

Lots of thinking going on about what I want to do in the coming years. Thinking more and more that *maybe* grad school isn't it. Still not sure though...but it feels to me like it would just be putting my life on hold for another 4-5 years...and I don't know if I'm ready for that. Of course I'd be more ready now than any time later in life. Well, we'll see how it goes. I might just want to do that masters in Product Development at Northwestern while working. We'll see. But things at work have gotten much much better. I've been working to try to get something going that I am super super excited to see (relating to some of my work in cali this winter) and we really do have an awesome team of some of the best people I've ever gotten a chance to work with. So I'm excited and optimistic about our project and the future. (As long as we can stick more to that research than supporting last year's work to other reseachers - which has been my major problem for the last 7 months or so)

I think I told most of you about us taking the outer wall of our cubes down at work. So basically we have no walls facing the aisle now so it's easier to collaborate and just way more open. An interesting comment from one of our IT guys walking by was that "it seemed way more like one of those 'creative' places and not like an engineering lab" I took that as a compliment even though he followed it with an "I totally don't get it" :) But seriously, the work we do, to use Paul Graham's analogies, is way more like painting or "design" in the traditional building sense than it is like engineering of old. It's not one man and his one idea in his cube that's going to turn the company around - now it's the collective ideas and designs of many people across many diciplines working together to design something that not only something that's technologically sound but also fits into a person's life and helps them accomplish something real or just feel good. And you can't do that sitting in a bunch of cubes. Design firms figured that out ages ago and it's about time Motorola Labs did too :) It's too bad we can't invade CXD's area downtown. That would be such an awesome place to work and as good for creativity as I'm sure Susan's awesome lake michigan window was for her :)

I feel bad for our new guy though..he just moved here and has like no furniture, no lamps, no cable, no internet, and no CAR! And he's living in Schaumburg! So basically he's going home and sleeping on the floor in the dark :( Hopefully his furniture comes tomorrow like it's supposed to!

There's an MIT info session today up in Deerfield!! Yay MIT!! :) I'm going to go up and talk to the high school students about why MIT is so awesome and why they should go there :) :) I love it...this is seriously like one of my favorite days every year!! But you all knew how much I love my school and how much I love making sure that we get the very best people we can. It looks like it might be a crazy year of interviewing for me. I have a TON of students assigned to me!!!


Thursday, September 16, 2004

fun work day!

yay! today was a fun day at work! although by the end of the night, I didn't finish what I wanted to, it was a ton of fun to try and to make *some* progress!! Yay!! :) I even just got home right now :) It's so great to have other techinical people around and to work through things together. So much better than having to work alone on everything and figure out all the little annoying setup things myself.

not much else new around here. Had some great indian food last night with a friend down in the city on Devon. Great food...a veggie place called Arya Bhavan. Good stuff and fun to hang out with a friend I haven't seen in a while!!

Next weekend who wants to go see Alice at the Neofuturarium???


Tuesday, September 14, 2004


yay for hanging out with cool work people at Nevin's in Evanston after doing REAL work and interviewing someone! :) I love nevin's...awesome outdoor seating and it was such a beautiful night!!!


Sunday, September 12, 2004

beer pong and cubbies

Apparently in Evanston it's legal to play beer pong on your front lawn. Who would have thought? I was walking into downtown evanston yesterday and there were a bunch of people in front of one of the houses on sherman playing beer pong...cop drives by...obviously sees them...keeps on going without a word. Interesting...

So I didn't win the cubbies tickets yesterday. But I did learn that before *every* game Trader Todds has a raffle for cubs tickets. So it may be worth trying out again sometime. If you get called for tickets like I did yesterday, you get two entries, otherwise walk-ins just get one. Even with that, there were only about 10 people there. So pretty good odds when they're giving away 4-6 tickets every day! At least the cubbies won yesterday!!! Hopefully that starts a trend!!! No days without cubbies baseball for the rest of the season!! :)

Oh oh oh. And I just bought my tickets to Boston for the October 1st weekend!! Yay!!! I'm so excited!! I miss boston so much!! It'll be great to go back there!!! :) :) :) Too bad my friend Susan who just moved there will only be in Boston on Friday since she's headed to Chicago on Saturday for a cubs game!! But it'll be a fun trip for sure!


Saturday, September 11, 2004

stacie's birthday!!

So last night was a ton of fun!!! It was my friend Stacie's birthday and we went downtown! Fun fun!! Yummy dinner at Navy Pier, and drinks at *the* most awesome place in the world, the 96th floor of the Hancock building!! SO beautiful up there!! It was amazing!!! And we made it home in time so we didn't have to ride the "scary" bus from Howard :) Fun fun night and Happy Birthday Stacie!!!!!


poor ron

So I was listening to game 2 yesterday on the way home from work. And guess who is singing the 7th inning stretch??? None other than Pat and Ron!! So in the top of the 7th, they pretend to interview each other like they interview whoever is singing the 7th inning stretch. So Pat says to Ron, "Hey Ron, so what have you been up to lately?" And Ron says something to the effect of , "Well Pat, I've been drinking a lot of wine lately. You know, they say dogs can tell when you're upset, so I've just been going home after all these losses and getting a bottle of wine and locking myself in a closet for an hour. When I come out, my dog doesn't seem to mind me so much" :( Poor Ronnie! Let's go cubbies and make ron happy!!!!! :)

Other cubbies news...I have a chance at tickets for this afternoon's game!! Yay!! Heading down to trader todds in a little bit. Better than 50% odds they say, so we'll see!! I really want to go to another game at wrigley this year!!!!!


Thursday, September 09, 2004


So I've been playing with this new music service called Rhapsody for work. Basically you pay them $10/month and you can download and play any music you want for free. They've got over 700,000 songs on there so it's almost as big as the iTunes library. It's really cool and I downloaded over 400 songs today...listening to all sorts of music that I thought I might like but never paid the 99 cents for on iTunes. Very cool for sure! I think it would totally change the way I listened to music if I would buy it long term. Too bad it doesn't work on a mac or on my tivo :)

Should have fun tomorrow! It's stacie's birthday and we're off to do something fun downtown!!!

And for sure I'm coming out to Boston the first weekend of October!!!! Yay for boston!! I miss it so much!! Too bad susan's going to be back in chicago most of that weekend :( :( :(


Wednesday, September 08, 2004

work is really getting to me lately. I really wish I could work in some place where ideas and good hard work were respected and honored and people were allowed to lead work on things that they feel strongly about. I'm just so frustrated with motorola right now and really want to work in someplace smaller where my ideas can really make a difference. Honestly I feel like I'd be more valuable working for a software development organization than doing what I'm doing now. But at least I'm working at something cool on the side with a cool and crazy-smart MIT guy at work! :)

A friend's away message today was "Unless it's mad, passionate, extraordinary love, it's a waste of your time. There are too many mediocre things in life. Love shouldn't be one of them." I totally agree...and also think it should apply to work. You ought to be mad and crazy about what you're working on, and if you're not, there's something wrong.

A final note...there are definitely good people at motorola...and a few of you for sure read my blog. So don't get the wrong idea when you read posts like tonight's. It's just the vast majority of people who don't have a clue that makes me feel the way I do. Research should be filled with people capable of solid independent research, not people who don't know what x is (where x is a super-basic concept in their field)


Tuesday, September 07, 2004


There's something to be said for being able to walk places. Especially walking to dinner. It's just so nice to take a nice stroll down to a place, eat some good food in good company and walk home :) My dad came down for dinner tonight after we took his mac in to get the CD drive replaced. It was nice! Walked down to Lou's and watched the game there while they cooked up my dad's pizza. I wish more things were work...I really wish I could walk to work! I just wish I never needed a car except for road trips actually! As part of something I'm doing for work I learned that I spend 8% of my time driving...and that's sad!

And the game is *still* on now, in the 11th inning! Let's go cubbies!!!


Monday, September 06, 2004


yay for good friends and fun times in the city!! :) After watching the cubbies kill the astros, my friend stacie and I went off to explore downtown...good food at PF Changs, wandering around millenium park and the amazing concert pavilion, the "jelly bean," and the families from around the world exhibit. I learned that corn wasn't originally from America (why did I think that???). Anyway, a very fun evening, and now I must sleep.

Oh, and I'm learning Python in my spare time. So cool and so LISP like. It sure makes writing things like map, filter, and accumulate very easy!! :) If you know LISP/Scheme you know what I mean, otherwise you can ignore this paragraph :) :)

Goodnight all! :)

EDIT: corn really was from the americas...cultivated in mexico! :)


Sunday, September 05, 2004

neighbors, weekend, and moto phones

My neighbors this year are so much more friendly than the ones from last year! I've already met three of them and they all just started moving in on the first :) Yay for friendly neighbors!! This should be a fun year :)

Not much else new around here. Went to dinner with my parents today and barring rain tomorrow will be heading downtown to PF Changs with stacie!! :) It's been a nice relaxing long weekend here. Nice and quiet since like everyone I know went out of town this weekend.

In random motorola news, we released this phone last week for verizon called the v710, and it's got bluetooth in it with OBEX (the way you can transfer pictures to other phones and to your computer using bluetooth) but verizon disabled it because it "didn't fit their business model" Yes, basically they want to charge you that $.25 per picture to MMS it to the other person and not let you BT it to them like all the other carriers let you do. In any event, there's a contest out there to see who can break open the OBEX code the fastest. Pretty entertaining. It's just so amazing how limited we are in developing phones based on what carriers want/demand/decide to disable. And often crazy how something like billing can ruin a great feature.


Friday, September 03, 2004

new quiz!

Thanks lauraf for this link :) Totally some truth in here...except for that whole money in the bank thing. I think I'm very entrenched in that "friend" category with just about everyone. Not that friendships can't turn into something more...but it's always awkward to try to tell someone that you want it to. Especially when there are many complications involved... And as you all know, there are complications involved in everyone I like ;)

eXpressive: 7/10
Practical: 4/10
Physical: 4/10
Giver: 6/10

You are a XSIG--Expressive Sentimental Intellectual Giver. This makes you a Teddy Bear.

Hee! I just want to give you a big squeeze. You are tender, honest, generous and fair. You are an excellent kisser and a sensitive, communicative lover, and you know it. You would never intentionally hurt someone's feelings or overstep his/her boundaries. You have beautiful eyes.

Most people take your laid-back attitude, blazing wit and subtle sexiness and stick you in "friend." But some see your extreme hotness for what it is and latch on. This means you have a few members of your target sex in the bank at all times -- I call this "money in the sex bank" -- but you're too sensitive and thoughtful to exploit them. More than once.

You are so rational and deliberate in an argument that it can frustrate and exhaust your partner. Your fights can take forever, but your press on with them until they are completely resolved and both you and your partner are satisfied. If your partner is weak of will, s/he may just give in -- be wary of this! An emotional or passive-aggressive outburst later will hurt and horrify you.

It is *critically important* that you are able to respect your partner. The moment you lose respect for him/her, you lose everything.

When you make friends, you make them for life -- you can go without speaking to a friend for years and pick up right where you left off. You are completely faithful, both physically and emotionally. You are the second best (to XPIG) parent of any type.

If you are male, you have a huge shlong. Just saying.

Of the 45576 people who have taken this quiz, 8.6 % are this type.


Thursday, September 02, 2004


not much new here but thought I'd just say hi :)

I saw the new Jet Li movie the other day, Hero! It was really good! Amazing cinematography...use of color (which I have been informed that coloring movies costs $1200/hour for the people working on it!!) Just a really awesome movie all around!

Nothing else really new. I found out my friend susan is living a few blocks from my favorite veggie restaurant in Boston, Grasshopper! I totally have to go there when I go out and visit!! Too bad the weekend I'm visiting she'll be in Chicago :(