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Showing posts from October, 2016

Phyton: Episode 2

**Previous episode**

Al had just picked up his fork for the delivered plate of food.
“Al, may I sit with you?”
He turned and saw Jeff at his elbow, trying to let people go by in the tight confines of the diner’s aisles between tables. He shook his head, but said, “Sure” and set down his fork as Jeff slid into the booth opposite. Of course Jeff knew about the diner, Al came here every week after fencing on Wednesdays for the last 20 or so years. In fact Al tried to imagine a time when he had missed this ritual, only conferences, and always the same sunny-side-up burger even if it was late evening. The only change was the company, over the years people had come and gone, including Jeff for a while.
“I’m really sorry,” Al snapped back to the present as Jeff pulled out a manilla envelope, he did look a bit sorry, “but the boss said to have another go at you.” He slid the envelope over the table, missing the fork.
“What’s this?” Al felt like he was in one of those old spy movies.
“A bit more evi…

Phyton: Episode 1

** This is the first episode in a series. Also take a look at my other stories. **

“Okay, run this by me again, I don’t quite get it.” Dr. Al Ingram stood with his arms crossed studying the shorter man intently. He certainly didn’t need to have it repeated, except to hopefully lay his incredulity to rest. The man wore his dark grey suit, somewhat reminiscent of styles from earlier in the century, with a bit of unease and the unease transmitted itself through his movements.
“Alright,” Jeff ran a thick-fingered hand through his black hair and took a step back, as though he could retrace his words with steps. It also helped him to not look up at such an angle. “You are a recognized skeptic, outside of your own work…”
“And I am never complacent with that either.” Al cut in.
“Right, well we need you to work with the Fislers. We would like you to look into their advances. We believe that you are the best suited for this as it fits your field and you have the clearance.” Jeff finished and stared…

Short Story: Caught Speeding

*Note: This is not a new concept, but I am definitely practicing writing. Here are more short stories.*


“You’ve got to be kidding me.”

“What?” An automatic response to really any noise my officemate made, some exceptions.

“This is nuts.”

Not answering directly usually indicated that I should pay attention, but it did seem he was just saying things to be outraged over the most recent political scandal. However, when I looked up the chagrin on his face didn’t seem faked. He slammed his chair back and stood up, paced in the small office and then retrieved the chair . Sitting down he grimaced, and took a breath I recognized as his story-telling breath.

He beckoned me to come around to look at his screen.

He had what looked like a really badly done version of YouTube, yep, GovTube. Nobody watched GovTube unless they were told to. Maybe if the government had made one well-thought-out contract with YouTube more people would have used it.

“Watch this,” he nearly spat and violently slammed the space …

The Lab of O

I’ve started the new job at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology! Specifically I am working for the Macaulay Library and it is awesome! When I started my previous job at COS I really wanted to push them to start supporting citizen science, but that never really worked out. Now I am dropped right in the middle of a citizen science and machine learning project! What could be better? If you want to help out: edbird is where you should submit checklists and upload photos, and merlinvision is where you can box/annotate bird photos.
So other than the tons of paperwork that comes with switching jobs, it is pretty awesome. My normal commute now is a walk in through the woods, with binoculars, so I can bird on the way in and out, and sometimes lunch too. It certainly beats 30 minutes each way unless I got stuck behind a bus.
Of course I am still learning the stack after two weeks (I claim there is quite a bit of paperwork to do), but I am starting to wrap my head around how things are done and being r…