Daily Work Log 2006-07-25

I spent an hour and a half dealing with e-mail, health insurance, taxes, papers, and so on.


A lot of it was stuff I’d been putting off, but was in my system. For some reason this morning felt like the right time to do it. Nobody’s here yet. I recently read a suggestion, I think on 43Folders, not to deal with e-mail first thing in the morning. Unfortunately, it’s something I prefer to have cleaned out, especially because my e-mail account has its own -Action-, -Waiting For-, and -Response- folders to check on.

Right now there’s this metaphorical cloud on the horizon. Our lab is moving. We’re leaving Tulane. Sure, we’re going to “greener pastures”, but this city and university have been my home for seven years. This lab, for nearly four. The cloud is not only philosophical — it’s logistical. In a few weeks our servers will be shut down. The following week, all of the workstations will be packed up and shipped off. In one of our most productive times of year, we’re facing substantial downtime, yet deadlines continue to nip at our heels.

Some of us still haven’t got apartments in Baltimore yet. I am included in that group, unfortunately.

I went to the Payroll building to take care of my tax situation (no big deal, but needs addressing), and I found that Payroll has become “New Orleans Jazz Orchestra”. At least that’s what the sign says. Apparently they never moved back to campus after Katrina. Everything else moved back, basically.

I wonder why they didn’t move back… oh wait. I know. Because it’s a pain to get them to do anything, and you have to go bug them in person. That’s a lot harder when they’re a 15 minute drive across town, rather than walking distance on campus.


I sent them an email. That’s step 1. Step 2 is to call them.

I just spent some time discussing our workstation set-up with Rob and Umar. We currently use a central file server to host people’s home directories, and we remotely mount them on the workstations. Due to increased file I/O and bandwidth issues, that’s no longer a great solution. It also used to be more important, because people shared machines a lot. That doesn’t really happen any more, so it makes more sense for people to have local home directories. We’re going to want mirrored local disks on the workstations, where possible. For the machines where that’s not possible (like laptops) people should back things up onto external disks. I currently do that every night with my powerbook, automatically.

Busy day. More news later. I’m going to try to make it home through the rain now.