We're a little crazy, about science!

A wait off

See what I did there, again? Yesterday I lamented that I was waiting, and waiting, and waiting, but Godot never seemed to show up. Wait wrong story. But seriously, I have been waiting months for equipment so I could start my dissertation data collection. THE final thing. I can’t begin to put into words how frustrating this whole process is, I’m ready to do something, like now! I want to do it, the will is there, but the equipment isn’t. So what to do, but wait and wait some more, unless…

After the craziness that was last week, I thought for sure I was going to get bad news this time around. Mostly because if the equipment was going to ship last week I would’ve gotten an email with the notification letting me know it was on the way. So I went in knowing full well what the outcome would be, but this morning I went ahead and sent the email anyway. I really wanted to get hurt again apparently. Since Friday’s are shipping days I assumed that the earliest it would be shipping was this Friday. Well I sent off the email and it turns out it didn’t ship Friday, like I expected.

It shipped Thursday and my new fancy equipment will be in tomorrow!

That’s right, the wait is over and I’ve finally got the equipment in the mail at least. Assuming nothing goes horribly wrong between today and tomorrow and assuming the equipment is functional when it arrives, we should be FINALLY ready to get some data collection started. I’m hoping, if all goes well, to collect the first dataset this weekend if possible. We’ll have to see when the participant would be available to help, but I’m hopeful.

This means it’s finally time to switch gears and go from the theoretical side of things to the practical side of things.With the DARPA meeting (this one) right around the corner, I’m a little anxious to see if what I’m proposing will even actually work. Who knows, maybe it will, maybe it won’t, but you can’t find anything if you don’t go looking for it in the first place, so this will be an interesting adventure. The time between data collection and data processing is now severely shortened, which isn’t ideal, but hey we can do this I think.

It mostly means that my busy days are going to get a whole hell of a lot busier, with any luck I’ll be able to grab my ten participants worth of data over the course of the next month (on Fridays and weekends), but this also means very busy times ahead for yours truly. The problem is that while I am still a student, I haven’t really had to do anything on the school side lately. That doesn’t mean things have been slow, just the opposite frankly, but now I’ve got a whole new project and experiments that I need to do on top of the normal work stuff (plus the additional work stuff I happened to make for myself… fun!), so basically I don’t know how the next few months will go, but sleep is optional I’m told.

If I plan it right I can get five subjects done over the course of three days, so it shouldn’t be too many weekends needed to collect all the data. It’s the next few steps that will be tricky, but we’ll make it work somehow I’m sure.The second phase of my project will be difficult to finish as it is now, so I’m hoping to convince school-PI to let me revise what I am planning (since he was the one to tacked on the long list of things after this) and with any luck it will be okay. I mean the point would be that I tried and I’m hopeful that we can at least make an attempt at some of the stuff he wanted me to do.

Really this is a mixed blessing. On one hand, it means we can go as fast as I want/can to get the data I need to do my dissertation. On the other, it feels pretty fucking overwhelming at the moment, so adding to that with a whole other project on top of the stuff I’m doing really does feel like an insurmountable task. Then again, I’ve been doing the impossible for awhile now, so why not throw some more on while we’re here? I mean the nice thing is it’s only temporary and the data collection will be the most difficult part, or at least the most physically taxing part. With the data in hand, the rest of it will be (comparatively) easy because I can work on my own schedule. It’s just a time issue and finding the time in my schedule to plug the stuff in.

The next few months will be interesting, but depending on how hard I go, I may actually be able to graduate on time and that would be ideal because I already have some prospects for what is next, but those are for a far off post because while I’m excited and like making plans, I’m also depending on a lot of the stuff I’m working on now to make those things happen.

Now, time to get some data collected!

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