i forgot a title

I think the other devil that pop’s on Jay’s shoulder in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back said it best:

Right about here’s where the angel’s supposed to show up and tell you not to pull your dick out. But we bitch-slapped that little fuck and sent him packing, so it’s smooth sailing. Let ‘er rip, boy!

Yesterday was pretty terrible. I can’t motivate myself to swim as much as want to swim. I used to play number games, like it takes me X strokes to get half a lap, so that means I only have Y more strokes to go for a mile… and calculating those numbers would keep me occupied while I was swimming. Now I can’t forget the numbers that I’ve already calculated like 15 times, so I don’t have any more number games to play. Maybe I’ll just do it all in Hex?

I did get to read part of a really inspiring article called Do It Now which outlines a guy’s experience of graduating with TWO BS degrees in THREE SEMESTERS! Holy hell. I’ll read the rest of it soon.

Stuff O Twh Day:

  • DO IT NOW – I already plugged this, but it’s so awesome
  • Standards do not stifle creativity– strange arguments being made, I can’t decide which side I’m on (shock!)
  • Wikipedia: Hurt – The Johnny Cash and NIN song with some neat facts
  • Wikiquote: Music – Amazing sourced/non-sourced quotes about music. My pick: ”… I think, fundamentally, music is something inherently people love and need and relate to, and a lot of what’s out right now feels like McDonalds. It’s quick-fix. You kind of have a stomachache afterwards.”
  • Wikiquote: Mitch Hedberg – Quotes from the late and great comedian that are nicely categorized.
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A good sign you suck

Having the Pi Symbol ( Π ) in the bottom left corner of your website a la The Net which is one of the worst movies ever.

Fall 05 Final Exams

Mostly for my reference…

  • CIS 420 – 1:30 Monday
  • CIS 260 – 10:30 Wednesday
  • CIS 304 – 1:30 Tuesday
  • CIS 309 – ???
  • MGT 350 – 10:30 Monday

This is the end

Some more entries were imported today, I don’t know why they were missed in my initial import.

Yesterday Tim had a pretty awesome idea, why don’t we just go ahead and bridge the Thanksgiving vacation all the way to New Year’s.

It’s not like anyone gets shit done between Thanksgiving break and New Year’s day anyway.

Rick says vacations are making us potentially worse than we were before the break and I’m in agreeance today. Wow, I’m dragging. Big time.

Everyone is.

Today’s bits:

No Whining No blogging

This morning’s weather was pathetic. It completely ruined my entire day. I still haven’t fully recovered from it.

Food I’ve eaten today:

1 Bagel, 1 Rice Cake, 2 cans of Tuna (120 cal each), a cacophony of rice veggies and chicken with teriayki sauce, one grilled chicken burrito and a diet pepsi.

Links I’ve liked today:

I changed my swimming routine up today and it was very effing weird. I’ll keep trying what this book is saying, though.

Let’s hope tomorrow doesn’t suck as much. Although the countdown at the top of this site says 17 days left, there are actually 9 more days of classes until final exams.

Blackboard, Web 2.0 Antithesis

This is one of those rambling entries that hit me while I was driving home. Enjoy. P

Blackboard, the world’s leading course management system has been a part of my life as a university student for the past 5 years. I’ve also been a lurker on the ASU Lists for BBADMIN-L and BLKBRD-L for a couple of years, too. The horror.

With all of the buzz about Web 2.0 and what it is, why don’t we take a look at what Web 2.0 is not.

Blackboard is a nightmare from a user perspective. I liken the Blackboard user experience to the user experience the early incarnations of Napster—users learn way over complicated processes out of necessity. The over complication isn’t on just the student’s side, it’s also on the professor’s side. Due to my limited experience from the instructor’s view, the scope of this entry is going to be limited to the student’s perspective. However, I’ve been hearing war stories for my entire time at MSU inside class and in the office about BB’s absurdity for instructors.

To do a thorough analysis, let’s take a look at a student’s basic tasks:

  • What do I have to do this week?
  • How are my grades?
  • What’s new with the class?
  • What’s new with my groups?

Currently, I have to go through about three or four clicks or even five clicks to figure this out—per class.

I’m in 5 classes this semester. That’s at least fifteen clicks when it should all be in one place.

Did I mention that’s up to five clicks per task, per class?

Four basic tasks. Five classes. Four clicks. One nightmare.

Apparently the brass at Blackboard missed Steve Ballmer’s sweat hurling Developers * 37 speech.

If you don’t empower developers to use your application, ESPECIALLY an enterprise application such as Blackboard, there’s something horribly wrong. Instead of listening to countless feature requests, why not let a bored webdev guy at some podunk university use your API to do it? I’m having a ton of trouble seeing a potential loss in opening an API even after a university shells out a ton of cash to use this app. I’ve found minimal mailings and even less on BB’s site about their API. Do I have to be a member of their secret society to get it?

Some Idealistic Future

With all of the web-related optimism running rampant, I thought I’d point out a great piece of pessimism—which, left unfixed, will definitely spell some rather large problems for us in the future.

Abandon the Web – Five Paradoxes of the Web

I love it. Those five core problems are ones that everyone in the business has to tackle.