Thursday, August 22, 2013

Last Full Day

August 22
Day 34

I cannot believe that tomorrow is the last day. I am so excited for the presentations. We did a run through of them all today and they were all really good. After some minor tweaking we are all ready for tomorrow. They will all be posted online and I will post the link once its up.


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Presentation Done!

August 21
Day 33

I finished my presentation! All that hard work and I finally finished my presentation. I spent the morning adding the pictures to my slides. But you know that I couldn't go to long without having computer problems. My laptop really didn't like the picture file type so I spent a while converting them all. Oh well, at least it worked in the end. I presented the PowerPoint to my adviser and he gave me a few critics, but overall he though it was really good. We are presenting to the other interns tomorrow and then, hopefully, we will all be ready for Friday. I'm so excited!


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

August 20
Day 32

Hello. Today I met with Roger and got the images from him to use in my presentation. When I wasn't working on my Power Point I helped out with some other labs. The Insight lab was moving to a different room and so I helped to move the furniture. I also assisted the remote sensing lab in getting more data.

Campus got very busy today, as dozens of students moved in. It was cool to see the school with more people in it. One of my friends is a freshman at RIT this year and so I went to visit her. Her dorm is very nice and I'm sure that she will have a great time at the school.


Presentation Crunch Time

August 19
Day 31

Hello. It was a very laid back day. I spent the entire day working on my presentation. I was still waiting to hear back from the scholar about the University of Southern California files, so I wasn't able to work on those. I met with Roger about my presentation and he gave me some critics and tips. He says he will ring me some photos that he has used in presentations tomorrow so I can use those as well. Overall, a productive day.


Friday, August 16, 2013

Last Picnic

August 16
Day 30

Hello. Today was the last intern picnic. It was a really nice day out, so we played badminton and had a cook out. I can't believe that next week is the next week. It went by really fast.

Today I finished the files and then worked on my presentation. Roger came down to help me out and we tried to figure out how to save the bands in the format that the scholar wants them. I really hope we can figure out how to do them all at once, because doing all 1575 bands by hand would be really tedious and annoying. Luckily, he said that he though he could find out how to process the bands in groups over the weekend. Then he gave me some tips for my presentation and I went to work with the other interns in the reading room. I am glad its the weekend, and I'll be able to work on my presentation more at home.

August 15
Day 29

Hi. Today I spent most of the day working on the same files as before. Each ICA and PCA takes around 20 minutes to load and there are 35 files. This gives me a lot of time to work on my presentation and my summer reading. Tomorrow Roger is going to come in to help with my presentation and to help figure out how to process the files into the polynomial texture map. We are sending the ICAs and PCAs to a scholar who with do the actual compiling of the files into the PTMs but Roger says that I can try and do it myself as well. After a week of running files it will be nice to get a chance to do something different.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

August 14
Day 28

Hello. Today I am only at work for a few hours because I have a leadership meeting at my school, so this will be very brief. Roger told me to continue to make the new ICAs and PCAs for the same images, and hopefully I will be able to finish those by Friday. I am also really getting down to work on my final presentation, gathering data and assembling the slides. I hope to have it done by early next week, so I have time to practice it and get comfortable with it. I love to give presentations and talk in front of crowds, so I am looking forward to showing people what I have been doing this summer.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Being Productive

August 13
Day 27

Hello. Needless to say after visiting the Observatory last night, I was a little tired today. But I got here, bright and early, and I got stuff done. Yep. I'm still really tired.

In reality though, I did get through a lot of files today. I finished running all the files through one processing method yesterday, and I started on the second process today. It's mostly a lot of waiting for files to load, but once they are all done I will finally get to make the Polynomial Texture Maps, which will be exciting because its new and will hopefully have good results.


Mees Observatory

August 12
Day 26

Hello. Yesterday I didn't get into work till around 1, then I worked for a few hours, finishing all of the files that Roger had left for me. All of the interns left from CIS and we went to Mendon Ponds for a Sticky Lips BBQ picnic. We then drove to Mees Observatory in Naples to go star gazing. Our tours guides were very nice, giving us the history of the Observatory and testing our knowledge of stars and galaxies. The forecast was not great, but we got very lucky and the sky ended up being clear. We looked at double stars, the Ring Nebula, and other amazing things. I thought that the Ring Nebula was the coolest, it looked like a smoke ring floating through space. Last night was also the peak of the Perseid meteors and we were able to see some from on top of the Observatory. The sky was so clear of clouds and light pollution that you could faintly see the Milky Way. It was an amazing experience.

Here is a link to the Observatory:


Friday, August 9, 2013

Bring a Friend to Work Day

August 9
Day 25

Hello. Today was bring a friend to work day. I invited my friend from school who was interested in the research I am doing. It was fun to see her and to meet all of the other interns' friends. We had the picnic today, though we had to eat inside because it was raining. Probably the best part of today was having to explain my work to people. It will be good practice for the presentation. I saw when they got tired of me talking and I saw what topics they thought were more engaging. I took my friend on a tour of the labs, some of which I hadn't even been in yet. It was really cool to see what all of the other interns are doing.

I am almost done with the Latin manuscript files and, hopefully, on Monday I can try to Polynomial Texture Map program. On Monday all of the interns are going to Mees Observatory in the evening, so I will only be in the lab for a few hours. I am so excited for the observatory! It sounds like a really cool place with a great history. The Perseids are happening while we are there so I hope that the sky is clear so we can see them well.


Thursday, August 8, 2013

August 8
Day 24

Hello. Today was pretty uneventful. No computer problems at all, and I got a lot of work done. I am almost done with creating the ICAs and PCAs for the Latin manuscript. After I finish those I get to start experimenting with the Polynomial Texture Mapping program. I think that that will be fun and I am looking forward to learning something new.

This morning we had a intern meeting about our outlines for our final presentations. Mine didn't get too many comments, which I think is a good thing but some more feedback would have been nice. The one thing that someone did say though was that my presentation and that Calvin's (the other historical document restoration intern) presentation look to be very similar and he wondered why we were not presenting together. While the base of our projects are the same, up until the Latin manuscript we have been working on completely different projects and those are what we are focusing on. He is focusing on the Archimedes pages while I have been working on Saint Catherine's data. These require different processing and have different stories.

 I think that the key to my presentation will be making the audience understand why the research matters. I think that the best way to do this is by giving them the background and the story of the manuscripts and make the manuscripts not some random piece of old paper, but a possible key to important mysteries in history. Calvin made fun of me the other day for getting excited about the Roman death mask, but I have always loved the history of Rome and to be able to work on something like that artifact was amazing. I mean think about it, that mask was made as a remembrance of a man who died 2000 years ago. And I can still see what he looked like. That's crazy. Often when I ask Roger where the manuscripts come from or how old they are he doesn't know and he is more interested in processing them. But I feel like adding the extra level of story to the process makes it more interesting and engaging.


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

August 7
Day 23

Today was surprisingly free of technology issues. I got the files on the new drive that I was waiting for yesterday and kept working on those. The person who gave us this data also gave us a suggested ROI to use for the images. Unfortunately this ROI was not working for all of the images, and I spent today trying to see if it matched any of the files. After that I continued to make ICAs and PCAs for the Latin manuscripts.

 While I was waiting for the drive this morning I did some work on Zooniverse. Zooniverse is a website that lets researchers post data that they need more manpower to examine. This website allows anyone to help researchers find new stars or count the number of fish in a given area. My favorite is the project that helps to monitor wildlife in the Serengeti using wildlife cameras. All you have to do is record how many lions or elephants that you see in the image and you are actually helping with conservation efforts in Africa. It is really cool and I think that harnessing the power of the internet is a great way to get research done with limited funding. If you have any time go look it up.


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Why, technology? Why?

August 6
Day 22

Hello. This morning started off really well. And then the fickle deities of technology decided that I had been productive enough for one day and killed my computer. After the screen completely froze and I shut the computer down, I restarted it and tried to get back to work. But something was wrong with the program that I was using, ENVI. It ran into errors every time I tried to save an image or calibrate and image. I eventually realized that the problem was because the memory on my disk drive was almost out (200MB left). This made it difficult for the program to run and impossible to save anything. Luckily, we had ordered 4 new drives, 3 Terabytes each, and they came in late this afternoon. It will now take 6.5 hours to move all of my files and sync the drives. Hopefully I will be able to get back to work tomorrow. I feel like I've said that a lot. Maybe this time it will actually happen. It was nice to have a break this afternoon, though.


Monday, August 5, 2013

A Normal Monday

August 5
Day 21

Hello. Hope you had a nice weekend. I started off my day by dealing with more computer issues before finding out that I didn't need the problematic files anyway. Other than that and accidentally turning on Number Lock I had no computer problems. So, that was a nice change. (Also, Number Lock on a Apple keyboard is really confusing, since there ins't a light that tells you when it is on. I like Windows better) The files that I had been working on weren't really working out in the processing method that we are trying to figure out, so I switched to working on a different manuscript. This one is also in Latin, and it says something about the "mother of God" and other words about God and such, which isn't surprising given that most of the population except those associated with the church were illiterate. SO now I am just going through hand calibrating all of the images and getting them ready so we can try making a Polynomial Texture Map for the manuscript.

Today we had a Skype call with a CIS graduate who works at NASA, imaging things for the shuttles and launches. It was really cool to talk to him and learn about NASA, his career and how CIS helped him. I asked him about the spectacular images from the Curiosity Rover. It was a nice break from ancient documents to talk about space.


Friday, August 2, 2013

Undergraduate Research Symposium and Intern vs Technology Round 2

August 2
Day 20

Hi. Today I spent almost the entire day at the Undergraduate Research Symposium. It was a conference of many of the undergraduates that had done research this summer, presenting their findings and explaining their research. It was really cool to go to such a broad range of talks. I went to some talks from undergraduate interns in humanities fields as well as science and mathematics fields. The most interesting was probably the talk "Carbon Nanotube Wires with Improved Electrical and Mechanical Performance" by Colleen C Lawlor. This talk was about eliminating imperfections in carbon nanotube wires and finding a process that makes them have a high tensile strength as well as good conductivity. Some of the other interns gave a talk on their work making a multicamera array. They did a really great job and their research is really interesting, and you should check out their blogs to learn more about the research.

Once I got back to CIS I found my adviser and tried to work with the files that I made yesterday. Unfortunately, nothing we did worked due to the fact that we don't have Phototshop, only Gimp. I've been trying to figure it out for like an hour now and no luck. When we tried to work on the computer that does have Photoshop, the entire computer died and the computer guy has been working on it for like half an hour and its finally starting to work. I am so glad its going to be the weekend. Hopefully things will work better on Monday.


Intern vs Technology

August 1
Day 19

Hi. Sorry I didn't post this yesterday, but Blogger was having problems for some reason.

Yesterday I spent most of the day trying to get the new processing method that we are using to work. My adviser was not here for most of the day and we had a major communication error about how to make the files that left me sitting there not knowing what to do, unable to ask him because he was in meetings for 3 hours. So I tried to work on some other files that he gave me to do when I got tired of the first project. The disk drive that the other files, which are some pages of Livingston's journals he kept when exploring Africa,  are on was completely unrecognized by my computer. It did not show up anywhere. So I tried to do my blog, but Blogger did not want to work. Apparently technology has some kind of personal vendetta against me. Since I couldn't do any of that work, and by this point I had been trying for around 2 hours, I went back to working on the Saint Catherine's files. My adviser did eventually show up. He told me the correct instructions and I was finally able to get some work done.

Overall, it was a stressful day and I am looking forward to tomorrow and the weekend.