Friday, July 24, 2009

temporary break

no, i did not miss out posting about this yesterday. there was nothing to post! thesis writing has been put temporarily on hold. so we stop this phase at day33. next phase might begin after 2 weeks!!

until, the blog will be back to its normal duty. that would mean rare posts and completely non work related posts :P.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

day33 - was completely work free!!

and not really my fault. due to other appointments, only managed to go the lab in the afternoon. and soon thereafter, had to leave the lab for other appointments :P. so no work.

oh, by the way, there is a problem regarding the expected submission time for the thesis. yeah, writing it as quickly as i seem to be, doesnt seem to help much in the long run. that is because, i will be taking 2 weeks holiday starting next week. and soon after i am back and all set to work on draft-2, Nr will be on vacation for 2 weeks. So, he wont be able to read my draft-2 until he returns at the end of august. and since i will be on vacation next 2 weeks, i wont be able to give draft-2 to Nr before he leaves. so, all in all, the chances of submitting the thesis before september have almost evaporated now. but yeah, according to Nr's estimate, the work required to be done from now on until the submission time of the thesis needn't be more than 3weeks !!

but since, we dont have overlapping 2-3 weeks until september, there is no point, is there? :P

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

day32 - chapter five has gone live

i surprise myself with my sincerity :P. as i ought to, read through the results section in the morning. edited the simulation parameters section. generated good colour version of the graphs and then went through it all together and then mailed to Nr and Nj.

what to do next is the question? one chapter is remaining - the "Conclusions and Future Work". Future work? what should i write in future work? i don't intend to do any work in the future. and i dont expect anyone to extend this work for the future either ;). even if someone's wants to, he/she can go make up his/her own research questions. why should i blabber something now for his/her benefit? notice how i have painstakingly used both genders while referring to this hypothetic future researcher? given the extremely "large" number of women in cs research, i guess am being a bit too hopeful :P.

i had a look at another thesis's last chapter to see what should be written in these concluding chapters. it was huge, 15 pages long. my main meaty chapters are of such length. even, if i dedicate a page to every section in my thesis, i won't end up with such a big chapter. anyway's will look at this chapter work later.

so instead of that, considered writing the appendix, basically a glossary of all the terms. also considered making a camera ready copy of the workshop paper. yet, did nothing. completing the chapter seemed enough achievement for the day :P

Saturday, July 18, 2009

day31 - experimental fun

chapter 5 = Empirical Evaluation

it's all there in the journal paper. why not just copy paste and forget all about it? oh yeah, increase the size of the graphs. somehow bigger graphs mean better graphs? and what about the tables with the other results? make them bolder ?

oh yeah, so this is the second last chapter.. to talk about the experimental setup, the parameters for the simulations, the simulations and then their results. and finally, why the results are the way they are. somehow, it has always been very easy to explain the results. particularly its vagaries, the uneven flows and all that. can always find a convincing excuse for any surprising bends or turns ;)

so yeah, more than half of the chapter was done on the day in just 3 hours. all of it could have been done in another couple of hours .. but who bothered!! :P

so, to finish the chapter and to move onto more complicated things on monday

Friday, July 17, 2009

day30 - time was thrifty?

whole day was taken up by other work related activities ..
not my fault !!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

day29 - next chapter in line

proof read and sent over chapter 4 to Nr and Nj.

no more work could be done today or can be done tomorrow due to other assignments.

whoa, that sounds very very formal eh? :P

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

day28 - chapter 4 has no more weight

chapter 4 = Adaptation.tex
the tentative chapter 5 has been scrapped and put into chapter 4 as another section!

and the initial part of the chapter also written today, diagrams modified and everything done. all this took just 3 hours today.

was supposed to be proof reading it now, but too sleepy. so this blogpost ends now.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

day27 - chapter 4 has begun

and then we have some days, in which i start working soon after i reach the lab, and the work gets quickly done, and no procrastination at all except for the sleepy period after lunch, and all the expected work for the day gets done much before the time you expected it to be done!!

the day started with the decision to vanish chapter 5. well not exactly, but to merge it with chapter 4 so that now my thesis will have only 6 chapters. and of this merged chapter, more than half of it was completed today. ofcourse, it mainly involved merging and copying from minithesis and the journal paper, but still it was work and was done well. yes, am a glad soul for the day :P.

for a brief part, had to look at my code to identify the exact utility functions i was actually using. that was a scary time. i think i am quite relieved that i won't have to deal with this code anymore :D. that says a lot about my programming etiquette eh :D.

so, can we finish chapter 4 tomorrow? remember, by the original scheme, this would have meant finishing both chapters 4 and 5 ;). oh the funny part of this incomplete chapter 4 is that, i have finished the second half of it. the first half is actually waiting for its turn :D

Monday, July 13, 2009

para-fiction - title?

She was absolutely uninterested. But she really didn't have much of a choice. Being forced do this favour for her friend, she sat there with a fake smile trying hard to hide her boredom. Her friend was already lost in the 'oh-so-cute' narrations of the guy. This guy was, in fact, the actual reason behind her being subjected to such torture. In short, her friend was interested in this guy and wanted to meet him, so dragged her along to make the rendezvous look less conspicuous. Now, while her friend is continued to be mesmerised by the guy, his attitude and his lofty boastful stories have started to not just bore her but even annoy. And to add to the misery, the friend of the guy, who was supposed to join them, failed to turn up. She had agreed to tag along with her friend on the sole basis of the promise that there would be a fourth person to keep her company while the two soon-to-be love-birds got lost in their own cooing. But that obviously hasn't happened. Now, what is she ought to do? She certainly had no interest in being the third wheel and had tried making up an excuse and leaving, but they stopped her. They said that the fourth person, the missing guy, might turn up any moment. According to her, that moment might never arrive. In fact, now she wasn't even interested in meeting this guy who, by his absence, submitted her to such agony. As she kept getting more frustrated, she realised she was no longer in any mood of making small talk with a stranger and decided there was no point of her waiting anymore. So, she got up and announced her departure with a curt goodbye. She turned around and bumped into someone. Mumbling a sorry, she hurried away. The person looked mystified. After striding away a few paces, she suddenly stopped and turned around to look back. What if the person, that she bumped into, turned out to be the missing friend that she was waiting for all this time? He wasn't. "Not everything happens like in the movies", she reminded herself shaking her head and went home.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

day24 - no work and so no bore ;)


Friday, July 10, 2009

day23 - example has been set free !!

am too tired now to blah much on this post. did work all day, without distractions (chatting doesn't count as a distraction) or procrastination. so, a few points

a reasonable, sensible looking, hopefully passable example scenario has been come up with, explained in all the relevant places with all the required twists and turns in the introduction and the third chapter.

the said example has been accompanied by xfig aided eps+tex files aka diagrams to display the twists and turns more effectively.

second version of the introduction aka chapter 1 and first version of the organisation modelling chapter aka chapter 3 have been sent over to Nr and Nj. Nr is only supposed to look at chapter 3 while Nj is supposed to look at both as he hasnt looked at chapter 1 earlier. so its 2nd version will be commented by him only. or so is the plan.

now i sleep. have a meeting with Nr and Nj in 10 hours.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

day22 - time for examples to brew

so the main job for today was to come up with a proper compelling, all aspects encompassing example of an application system that would require my model and then the adaptation methods to make it perform its tasks better. anyway, given the complicated system that i deal with, any example tends to be long winded and abstract.

and my extraordinarily poor exemplifying skills and strong exasperation towards such tasks make this job even harder. anyway, thanks to a labmate, who threw some ideas at me as i appeared to go bonkers with irritation, i think i have a reasonable example, just enough to gain a grudging okay from Nr. but then, i didn't write it up in the introduction or in chapter 3.

the day passed away before i even knew it. some days are short lived .. they just rush past you as if they are frightened by the night and don't want to risk being caught by it. did that make sense?? :P

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

day21 - writing is not much fun

the mornings are generally delayed with the "catching up with the world" activities otherwise known as web-browsing to keep the self up-to-date, though it doesn't really matter. then the left over task from yesterday is attacked intermittently between all the chats.

and so, the pseudocodes were achieved using the not very confusing, but certainly a bit confusing algorithm style in latex called algorithm2e.sty. don't ask me what the 2e stands for, go and ask the author! with that, chapter 3 was all done except for the several examples that ought to be given. they are present in the older minithesis version but are now obsolete and have to be suitably enhanced. did i mention before that i hate giving examples? one of the examples of the activities i hate the most is providing examples.

so, instead of doing the thing i hate, i turned my attention to the comments and questions of Nr on chapter 1 aka Introduction. of course, several of them pertained to the examples that had been given in there and their apparent lack of "compelling factor and convincing abilities". and most of the other remarks had me go 'aaarggh' (that is 3 a's) with exasperation. of course, when acted upon, each of these remarks have the hidden ability of making the text clearer and more straightforward.

however, some remarks are just too painful and i wish dearly that i could ignore them and that they would disappear into oblivion. but that will not happen. even if i ignore just one remark and send back the improved draft to Nr, given the robotic mode that he uses while reading his student's drafts, he will make the same remark again even though he needn't remember having made it the first time. his robotic reading algorithm is quite deterministic in these aspects!

but then some comments have to be ignored for sanity's sake. like, just next to where i defined 'self-organisation' by copying the definition from a well known paper, italicising it and citing the source, his comment reads- "what is self-organisation".

oh yeah, i have finished version 2.0 of Introduction by working on the comments. except for the examples ofcourse. okay, so make it version 1.4 ....

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

day20 - it is all a bit 'haunty'

so started work a bit more sincerely today. and to reward my sincerity, the progress was painstakingly slow. started work on chapter 3 aka Modelling Agent Organisations aka Agent Organisation Framework and so on (yet to decide on the title). almost all the the work today involved following steps:

€ read a section/subsection from minithesis and corresponding part in the workshop paper
€ copy from workshop paper and paste in the file (file is basically a copy of the chapter file from the minithesis).
€ modify as and where required.
€ ignore and sidestep the paragraphs refering to the examples and highlight this fact and the pending jobs with some eye-catching CAPS and ====s.
€ repeat for next section/subsection.

all of it is done except for the examples and the pseudocode for the algorithms. the examples will take a lot of time, a lot lot of time. especially since, am yet to come up with a nice, strong convincing scenario to use as a basis for all the examples in the thesis.

at home after dinner, started working a bit on the introduction chapter by trying to answer the questions and justifications asked by Nr. gave up soon enough, having been flustered and exasperated with an increasing air of helplessness. ;)

Monday, July 06, 2009

day17 + weekend = ?

decided not to go to office aka lab on the friday i.e day17. convinced self that i will try to get some work done from home itself, atleast the easy parts of chapter3. but what do you know, as is invariably the case, never got round to even making attempts to work. not my fault majorly. most of the time was consumed by the wimbledon semis.

saturday or day18, i managed to revisit my code, specifically the input generation part, that had been lying unwanted and unattended since march, when results for the journal paper were obtained. and after reminding myself of what files did what and how, which i tend to forget with time, ran them to generate input. later on, copied some of the relevant simulation files and started some runs as well on that input. why am i running experiments now, you wondering? (you should wonder, incase you didn't bother to yet). i had just been silly and sincere to suggest that some graphs can be added (in the appendix) to the already existing ones just to backup the claim of the independence of results from unrelated simulation parameters.

and on sunday, finally opened the OrgModelling.tex file and completed two sections. both of which were basic copy paste from the workshop paper, with very little editing required. when i came to the part which required some actual work, the tennis finals got underway and thats it. blame roddick and federer for using up my afternoon.

Friday, July 03, 2009

day16 - chapter three is to be?

took me more than a couple of hours of sitting at the computer to copy create OrgModelling.tex file. ofcourse, the supporting files were copied from the minithesis and the recently submitted workshop paper. the relevant part in the journal paper is not required because that is superseeded by the workshop paper. anyway, copying these files and staring at the new file is the only work done for the day....

Thursday, July 02, 2009

day15 - adieu to literature review

so finally, this pestering chapter has been done for now. fitted in two papers of my external examiner in some way - no criticism but stating how it is not particularly useful in my context. also wrote up the paragraphs surrounding the major sections - you know, those that state what the sections contain and then summarise what the section contained :P. also wrote the final summary section of the chapter.

then compiled them all using the proper thesis formatting, the correct cls file and all. i had compiled and sent the earlier chapter using some random article format, but Nr is insisting he gets to look at this stuff in the correct format only. by the way, the dvi to pdf and the ps to pdf converters on my fedora are screwed up. they always tend to push up the contents and make the top margin almost disappear. i hate them, still use them, by hacking the cls file.. tch tch

gave this chapter a read through and sent it over to N{r,j}.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

day14 - chapter2 is almost seen

did not put many hours into this work today. yet the amount of work accomplished with respect to the hours put in is pathetic through an objective observation. but then, trying to summarise papers precisely into 2-3 sentences while also specifying why they aren't sufficient for what you seek is not easy.

yes, most of these additions were discussed in recently written papers, but those discussions have to be expanded upon. at the same time, i strangely came across a few papers that i had read but forgot to include in my recently written papers, but at the same time are relevant in some ways. so new stuff had to be written afresh. while writing about such new stuff, i also came across more stuff that is somewhat relevant and to be included. one such paper actually cites my workshop paper :D. i didn't know that any of my phd papers had any citations yet. but apparently they do!

and the final task involves, properly citing the papers of my prospective external examiner. can't afford any kind of slip up there. shouldn't criticise too much, if at all, and definitely not on a false basis. but at the same time should be clear on how it fits with what we seek and how related/useful it is, if at all, for us. have left this last task for tomorrow.