Wednesday, August 27, 2003

I've added a new link to the sidebar over there. I'm calling it Rants by Kris Engel. They make me laugh, so maybe you'll enjoy them. Then again one of my all-time favorite movies was "Mallrats," so maybe you'll just think I'm stupid :-)

Additionally, I was telling my Dad about this, so I might as well share with the rest of the folks out there. If you use Outlook and need some help controlling spam there are some good options out there.
-SpamNet, which is not free, but is probably the best execution of what a peer-to-peer network can do. Basically people vote on what they think is spam, then with enough votes the software automatically filters it out for you. It's pretty quick though, so most spam is immediately removed. Biggest drawback is people tend to be lazy and mark things as spam when they are not (emails from Moster.Com for example), so SpamNet also filters these.
-SpamBayes, my personal favorite as of today, is free! It takes a little while to get it working properly because you need to "train" it with good messages (called ham) and spam. Over time the filter gets good at recognizing that certain words or combinations of words occuring frequently in spam and in ham, and helps to filter them based of a probability that they are spam. It works very well for me, and has yet to turn up a false positive for me.
-For other options check out this article on Arstechnica.com http://asgard.arstechnica.com/ask-ars/2003/anti-spam/
Most of those ones I haven't played with, since I found one that I like (SpamBayes). If you are not an Outlook users though you have a lot fewer options. To you I say Good Luck!

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Second day of school is done. I've been to all my classes at this point so the preliminary thoughts are these:
-Chronic Disease will be easier than Protein, Carbohydrate, and Lipid Metabolism (they were both taught by the same professor, Dr. Dale Romsos. He's my advisor)
-Methods of Macromolecular Synthesis should be interesting. We're going to learn about the techniques that are used in biochemistry and microbiology, but we won't actually get any practice doing them. I suppose I might be able to watch the flow cytometer if I asked nicely, but what good is that when people want you to have 3 years of experience running one, not 3 hours of watching someone run on? I guess it's better than nothing?
-Pharmcology and Physiology of Excitable Cells is likely to be my most informative and difficult class. It's basic neuroscience apparently.
-Seminar.... this is a presentation in front of the entire Food Science department. I plan to talk about Short-Chain Fatty Acids and prevention of colon cancer. Interesting? I think so. I'll be the first of all the students to present, beginning September 16th. I like going first though, so that wasn't an issue. I just need to get my butt in gear on the preparation!

I still haven't landed a campus job yet. I emailed the folks in charge of the tutoring positions, which I am keeping my fingers crossed for, but I still don't know how it's going to work out.

Another issue.... you can see this photo below, and that's cool, but I'm trying to build a photo gallery and host it on my MSU webspace. Funny thing is some of the photos appear and some do not. I've also got to put some captions in there so there is some frame of reference for them.... but there is a little bit of stuff there.

Sunday, August 24, 2003



Here is a quick pic of Ellie and outside the Marriott Convention Center in San Diego!

Ah, my first blog post. Knowing myself I wonder how long it will take before I update this. I hope to keep it going at least a few times a week, even if it's only a small update once in a while.

Tommorow is the first day of my last semester of graduate school. Taking 4 classes. Should be interesting. I've got a Biochemistry methods class, a presentation, a class on chronic diseases, and "The Pharmacology and Physiology of Excitable Cells." That one should be a doozy. Interesting though too. I also need to study for my comprehensive oral exams that decide if I'm qualified to graduate or not.

So I've updated on school.... work! I'm looking for some at the moment. I applied to some tutoring jobs here on campus but I haven't heard much from them. I suppose if I must I'd go back to service labor type work (AKA McDonalds type stuff), but I'd prefer not to. So be it. In terms of career stuff I've been sending out resumes looking for positions. I did get a call back this past weekend from Kelly Scientific Services, a temp agency that places sciences workers, but they needed someone who could start sooner. OK... I guess at least I know people are interested in me though! I'm also working on the recruiter angle, trying to find someone who will shop me around. I figure better to have two people looking for a job for me than one (just me).