12 May 2008 - 4:04pmGoogle sucks

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As may be evident by the title of this post, our team of 7 was not one of the 50 winners of the Android Developer Challenge. We were informed by email Friday afternoon that, regrettably, we would not be receiving one of the $25,000 prizes.

In all reality I knew we didn’t have much of a chance. I saw a few of the other entries that people had posted on the internet and our application just doesn’t even compare. I’m proud of what we did and I had a lot of fun doing it… I wish we’d had more time and energy to come up with a submission that could have competed better with the top entries.

There’s another Android Challenge starting later this year, perhaps we’ll continue work on our application in preparation for another submission then. At some point in the future the write-up we submitted (and possibly the source code) will be posted on our website.

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6 May 2008 - 1:02pmWork

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Well, I’ve been home for a few days now, had a good weekend spending time with Joelle and my family. Joelle and I went shopping on Friday night and I spent entirely way too much money on clothes for work (some of which was funded by generous donations from my parents… thanks for that $0.63 gift card 🙂 ). Joelle’s birthday extravaganza took place on Saturday. We had spaghetti for dinner and cookie cake and ice cream for dessert.

Then Monday came and I started my job. As I understand it, I’m going to be doing some web development using Java Server Pages for possibly two different applications. At this point I’m trying to wrap my head around the structure of the application and the way the different pieces of hardware and software interact. I think I’m going to enjoy what I’m doing, but that remains to be seen.

As far as I know, I’m going to be working Monday – Thursday all through the summer and fall, hopefully maxing out my hours right before Christmas. My intentions are to save the majority of what I make so that Joelle and I will have some money to work with when we get married.

Completely off-topic: Android winners were not announced yesterday, as was originally stated. Word on the street (if by street you mean internet) is that the judges final scores for the top 100 applications are due tomorrow (the 7th). Hopefully they’ll all be on time and we’ll find out by Thursday who the 50 winners are.

I guess that’s all for now. I should probably try to find something to do that justifies my hourly pay rate.

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30 April 2008 - 9:55amHappy Birthday Joelle!

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Today is Joelle’s 21st Birthday! If you see her or have some way of contacting her, wish her a happy one. I’ve got to get her a present this weekend (or maybe I already did…).

It has been a long time since I posted on this thing, so several items of importance follow:

First, an update on the RSS Challenge I mentioned that we had in COSI. I didn’t win, Ryan did. My entry had some database issues and several bugs which needed to be ironed out.

An update on Android: We submitted our entry to the contest on the April 14th deadline and are now waiting anxiously to hear from them. Winners for round 1 are notified on or about May 5th.

School: Last week was dead week (the last week of classes before finals). That means I had a buttload of work to do and no time to do it all. I had two programming assignments due last Thursday, a project presentation on Friday, another presentation this past Monday as well as write ups for each of those. I had one final each Monday and Tuesday and I have two today (one of which is already over). Good news is that I got everything done and turned in on time and I think I’ve done decently on all my tests so far.

I start my co-op on Monday and will be working almost full time from then until Christmas. I intend to work on a few different things this summer, hopefully one of which will be Android (I really hope we win this first round). When the fall gets here I’m thinking I’m going to follow along with the Cryptography course Tino is teaching via Ryan and Jake. I’d like to take the course but I won’t have an opportunity since it’s only offered in the fall.

All that said, I have about 80% of my stuff packed and will be heading home tomorrow probably around noon. Hopefully I’ll have time in the near future to mess with the theme and get the colors the way I want them (I know some of you have said it’s too light, too boring, etc.).

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9 April 2008 - 9:18pmBlah

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Sometimes people are very frustrating.

After tonight’s COSI meeting (which is now), I’m presenting my entry to the COSI RSS Challenge. Unfortunately, it’s not ready for public consumption (still has some database efficiency issues, etc.) but pretty soon I will link to it here for people to try out if they’re interested. There are a whopping two other entries to the Challenge by Jake and Ryan so I expect competition to be fierce.

Also being presented tonight is Jake’s Open Server Platform project. It’s a really awesome server framework written in Erlang. He’s just released version 0.2 and his project is attracting the interest of people not only here in COSI but all over the place. His code is all open source and can be viewed on Google Code.

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4 April 2008 - 9:19amGooooin’ to the chapel and we’re goooonna get ma-a-arried

So as you all know, Joelle and I are engaged. That means wedding plans are abounding. It’s almost overwhelming the amount of things to consider when it comes to a wedding. That said, it’s also a lot of fun.  We’ve already been all over the Binghamton area looking at reception halls and have settled on The Silo Restaurant in Greene, NY. They have a very nice banquet room for the reception and lots of landscape outside that will provide a nice background for pictures and such.

Joelle’s already decided on a wedding dress that I think she’s going to be ordering this weekend. Also, she went out to the craft stores with her mom last weekend and put together a test centerpiece for the tables at the reception.

Now, you may think to yourself, “Self, they’re starting this planning business really early aren’t they?  I mean, their wedding isn’t for another year and a few months.” And you’d be correct, we are starting early. But we’re lucky we did because many of the reception halls we called were already booked for the date we picked (which means there are crazier people out there). The truth of it is, I’m glad we’re starting early. Planning a wedding traditionally has a great deal of stress associated with it and I want to minimize that as much as possible. Starting way early gives us plenty of time to make decisions on all the important things.

So pray for us. If you know anything about weddings you know there’s still a lot of things to take care of, from favors for the guests to honeymoon arrangements. I’ll keep you posted here on the plans and if you have any words of wisdom, leave them for me.

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31 March 2008 - 11:28pmOh, April Fool’s Day

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April Fool’s Day was welcomed just 18 minutes ago (EDT) and already there are a wealth of pranks littering teh intarwebs.

First, I present to you the Global Internet Maintenance Organization (GIMO). The GIMO is the organization responsible for the cleanliness and upkeep of the intertubes and has designated April 1st as its annual “Internet Cleaning Day”. The GIMO’s very own Alexander Gotham sent out a mass emailing just today announcing this to all internet users. For more information, visit their website.

Second, Google released a brand new service today called gDay. Powered by MATE technology, gDay seeks to provide the user with tomorrow’s search results today. Check it out here.

Third, the author’s of XKCD, Questionable Content and Dinosaur Comics have teamed up to present what I find to be the most humorous April Fool’s Day prank I’ve seen. Take a look at their respective websites, keeping in mind which you’re clicking on. I think you’ll find the results quite amusing. Of course, this will probably no longer be valid after April Fool’s Day is over.

Fourth, heeding the requests of the aforementioned Alexander Gotham of the GIMO, P-Dub of pdub.net has brought his site down for spring cleaning.

Fifth, Zach and Ryan officially announced the end of the Clarkson Open Source Institute. All hardware is either being sold or donated with proceeds benefiting the K12 Program and the MCS Department here at Clarkson.

Sixth, I saw this link at the top of my Gmail screen last night, but at that time it didn’t actually go anywhere. This morning, however, it leads to a new feature in Gmail known as Custom Time. Check it out for yourself.

What a funny day. I will probably update this list as I become aware of new pranks, so stay tuned.

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18 March 2008 - 8:03pmHappily Engaged!

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Joelle and I are engaged!! We’re very excited about it and are really looking forward to our wedding on July 11th of next year.

How it went down:

I got home from school on Friday for my spring break. I had been planning for the last few weeks that I would use my week off from school to shop for a ring and plan how I was going to do everything. Joelle’s spring break wasn’t until a week after mine, so I had the week to shop around and such without her being home to find out.

That all changed when Miss Joelle decided she wanted to come home for the weekend a week before her break. I had planned to wait another week but I was so excited about it that I wanted to do it early. So I stayed up for hours on Friday night (the 14th) making this webpage for her. On Saturday morning (the day she was coming home), I went out to do some shopping and found this ring at Ruby and Sons Jewelry.

Later that day, after spending some time at her house, Joelle and I went back to my house and I seized my opportunity. I sat Joelle down at the computer and had her watch the slideshow. At the end, I knealt down beside her and asked her to marry me. Needless to say, she said yes and we spent the next several minutes just hugging each other and looking at how pretty her ring is on her hand.

Watch the slideshow, look at the ring and leave us comments if you want to. We’re excited and we’d love to hear from you if you’re excited too.

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14 February 2008 - 11:31amHappy Valentine’s Day

Key concept for dating: If you’re a boy with a girlfriend, buy her something for Valentine’s Day (they like flowers). If you’re a girl with a boyfriend, buy him something for Valentine’s Day (they aren’t always as excited about flowers). If you’re a boy without a girlfriend or a girl without a boyfriend, keep looking. If you don’t fit into any of those categories then… well, we’ll just leave it at that.

Joelle’s coming to see me today!! I’m super excited. 😀

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13 February 2008 - 10:51amThis class is boring…

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Some news. Again broken into categories for your convenience.

Life – This past weekend consisted of a series of activities that took place back at home. In no particular order: pizza from Rossi’s, Sportsman’s Show in Harrisburg, church, dinner at Russell’s Steakhouse, grocery shopping and two appointments. Now I’m back at school and very excited because Joelle is coming to visit me tomorrow!

Books – I just finished reading Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. It was an excellent book and I’m looking forward to reading the one’s that follow it, which I ordered yesterday. Check out my books page to see what else I’m planning to read.

New work – I’m going to be working with a high school student who is part of COSI on a website for some sort of cheese store (?) in the area. Should be interesting.

Databases Class – As boring as always.

Android – After a somewhat lax (is that a word?) week behind us, we should be picking back up this week and continuing to move forward. The new deadline for submissions is April 16th, so we have a good 9 weeks or so to get our project ready.

I guess that’s it for the time being.

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22 January 2008 - 7:47pmA need for prayer

I found out today that a friend of mine whom I haven’t seen or heard from in quite some time was arrested for various reasons. This friend made a few bad decisions sometime back and chose a direction for his life that I never would have expected from him. The two of us shared a common interest in computers and related technology and because of that we always got along quite well.

Having said that, I will be praying for him a lot over the next few weeks and I intend to continue praying for him for a long time. I’m hoping that his recent set of circumstances will result in someone getting through to him and helping him get his life back on track.

Please pray for him. I know you may not know who he is or even what his name is, but that’s not important. God knows him and knows all of the details surrounding his life these past couple of years. All that is required is that you mention him in your prayers and ask God to work in his situation.

I’ll post further information regarding this situation as it is given to me and deemed appropriate, in the meantime please keep praying.

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