21 October 2005

Fidel Castro: friend to all creatures

Fidel Castro

Well folks, we were frankly stunned to have been recently visited by Fidel Castro, socialist revolutionary, friend to all creatures, on a rescue mission. You see, Briony was heading home and she found, quite out of his tree, the capitalist sympathiser, Clifford:


Delusional, and a bit lost, we observed Clifford for a short while. However, night was falling and, well, we weren't quite sure what to do with him. We called up WIRES for a bit of advice. Turns out what we probably should have done was let him work out his political alignment on his own, but the way it worked out, we ended up taking him home for the night to keep him away from cats and the like. Fidel weaved his own magic, lulling him to sleep with words of common ownership and inciting him to throw off his shackles and initiate a workers revolution.

Briony giving Clifford a send-off

The next morning, Briony took Clifford back to were we found him. He chirped away quite happily, and we let him do his thing, promoting Marxism and decrying the free market economy.

Fidel educating Clifford in socialism so he may bring it back to his peoples

Anyway, it's off to Canberra tomorrow to see these folks... looking forward to it :)

10 October 2005

will the real bjoshi please stand up?

I am in the rather enviable position of having a reasonably unique first name. Weirdly enough, there exists the aptly named BHAUTIK physical analysis toolkit for FE analysis, which pre-dates my PhD but is quite close to my PhD topic! But that's not what this rant is about.

Google and ebay conspiring together for added humour value
My surame, Joshi, from the part of India it originates from, is as common as Smith; it's a popular family name with a long history. Given that my first name is sometimes a little difficult for western tongues to process, given a choice, my username for email accounts is bjoshi; it's been this way ever since I got my first email address over ten years ago (incidentally, it's flooded with spam, but still going).

So when I was lucky enough to get invited to open an account at gmail, I created my bit of abstract real estate by choosing bjoshi as a username. This opened me up, however, to the new (for me) experience of getting a flood of misdirected personal mail in my direction. For some reason, people either can't enter their address correctly into a form, or just assume that the person that they are trying to correspond with has a gmail account and that their username is, well, bjoshi.

Amongst the flood of stuff I get:

  • Password reset requests (yes, you, whoever you are, it's taken; stop trying)
  • Numerous CV's and resumes
  • Job offers(!!)
  • Various emails regarding an internal SAP migration (whatever the heebejebus that is)
  • Press releases from a lieutenant Colonel in Kashmir(!)
  • Account setup information for an ADSL account

I often wonder who these other bjoshi's are.. it's nothing if not just amusement for me, but I'm assuimg that these unsuspecting individuals are losing out on something... I hope for their sakes that they get it sorted out. Whoever they are.

3 October 2005

spring loaded


Figure 1: (a) Lobster + rabbit
(b) Cutaway of mesh of brain

Figure 2: Ducks, ok?

Figure 3: Cake stab

It's been a good long while since I have last posted, so here I am again, the other side of a rather extended self-induced journal-paper-writing stupor.

The PhD work I've been doing on adaptive mesh generation has been plodding along quite nicely; two examples are in Figure 1 to the left. Figure 1(a) does indeed demonstrate a lobster squeezed into a rabbit (any resemblance is purely coincidental, really); 1(b) is a rather shiny cut-away view of a volume mesh of the brainweb head; the cortex is in blue, the white-matter underneath is red.

However, in the real world outside, spring has truly exceeded our ability to describe it, showering us with an assortment of miniature versions of other, small, sad, but nevertheless endearing flightless birds (see Figure 2).

Just over a year ago big thing happened to myself and Briony. It's been a wonderful year, and to celebrate we decided a) take everything out of the house, b) clean it, c) put it back, and finally, d) throw a party (see Figure 3). Thankyou to all you wonderful folks who could come, we had a great time, and thanks for all the hellos from all the people that couldn't.

Speaking of Briony - she puts up with a lot; and has caved into a desire to write about it!. Sort of.

Thusly I present to you: Diary of a PhD widow!