marathon day 4: nose to the grindstone

From the recording sessions, I now have 89 unique FSL signs. Each sign was recorded for both Rommel and Mary Jane, making a total of 178 samples. Sometimes there two or more takes per sample, meaning I'll end up with more than 178 samples in all. Right now I am editing and resizing the video files into small 160x120 clips - one clip per sign.

20 out of 178 done


marathon day 1: Procrastination

I have forgotten all about this: Structured Procrastination. Combined with mini-milestones, this approach works very well for me.

Mini-milestones, for those unfamiliar with the term, are very small tasks with only two possible statuses - NOT DONE and DONE. There is no 80% Done, it is either finished or not finished. This means the tasks must be small and straight-forward. We break down projects into smaller and smaller sub-projects, modules, functions and tasks until we have small, easily finished to-do items.

Structured procrastination exploits these small tasks. Large to-do items are broken up into small tasks making it easy to switch projects. If I don't feel like doing Project A, there are several mini-milestones from Project B I can accomplish. Once I get bored, switch back to Project A or yet another Project C.


marathon day 0

This summer, starting April 20, the lab is doing a Research Marathon. Forty-two days of nose-to-the grindstone research grunt work. The goals of the marathon is to (a) produce solid experimental data to back up the thesis; and (b) to produce a paper or report ready for publication. In my case, I will add a third goal: (c) my thesis proposal defense.

I am simultaneously excited and terrified, although I'm long past the stage where fear and excitement are indistinguishable. I have no idea what's going to happen and that's a good thing! You could say I am taking the pessimistic approach: I'll be pleasantly surprised more often.