Beemer (dr_tectonic) wrote,

Coming up for air


So I'm about halfway done with Month-O-Workshops. The first one was a little three-day workshop before the 4th which was sort of looking for synergy between CS and climate science; it was a bit of a mixed bag, and I don't have much to say about it.

The big eight-day workshop that started last Monday and finished yesterday was pretty cool, though. It was all about dealing with temperature records, and it had a lot of time devoted to working on group projects. The talks were above-average, I think because the focus was on explaining practical techniques, so we didn't get many of the talks where somebody just stands there and blathers about their research for half an hour. And the group projects were cool. I was on the spatial analysis group, and it started out a little rough when we were trying to figure out what exactly we were going to do, but then it came together and we, like, actually DID stuff. My contribution was mostly to restructure all the data into something that we could easily pass back and forth between different subgroups. I also wrote code to krig it, but I feel like the data bit was more important in terms of our overall productivity.

I ended up working a nine-hour day on Saturday (which was a workshop day), because I needed to be able to hand my stuff off on Monday, and I thought, y'know, if I just do it NOW, while it's all still in my brain, I won't have to be all stressed out trying to get it finished Monday morning. Which was a good decision, because there was plenty of other stuff to deal with before I left.

Sunday was a lot of nothing, except for dinner and some Cards Against Humanity with Bob & Jeff and Douglas while he was in town.

So Monday at lunchtime, I bailed on that workshop and headed down to NOAA (stopping at the grocery store on the way to pick up a box of zinc lozenges to fend of a possible cold (which they did) and a salad for lunch (which I didn't get to eat until 3, at which point I was so hungry I nearly went feral when I bonked my shin really hard with the chair in the break room, but then I got food and things were okay again). This was a three-day workshop on supporting climate science by improving our ability to shove giant lumps of data around the internet, and on Tuesday I did 1/3 of a tag-team presentation on our experience with publishing Big Data. Which went well, thankfully, since I had put my slides together three weeks previously and didn't have a chance to sort out exactly what I was going to say until that morning...

Tuesday evening I got to abscond with Eli (who was one of the workshop conveners) afterwards for dinner at Jewel of India and then bring him home to socialize with me and Jerry and the cats for a couple hours, so that was excellent.

And then Wednesday I bailed on the final half-day of that workshop in favor of finishing off the surface temperature workshop back at NCAR. The final result of the spatial working group was that we got the statistical machinery setup running and iterated twice on the Switzerland test case and it appears to actually, like, work and everything!

And then I came home and took a goddamn nap.

More workshops start Monday...

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