Blogs

Exotic Food on North Campus

Do you feel like you’ve eaten at all the places around North Campus, and want to try something new?  Afraid to veer away from the staples like Jimmy Johns and Pazzo’s?  There are a myriad of restaurants around North Campus that offer great food that you might not have tried or even noticed.  Here’s a few suggestions for the next time you’re craving something different:

Sav’s: A West African restaurant with delicious flavor and low prices, located on the corner of Limestone and Maxwell.  They offer Bowls, which are a combination of rice, potatoes, and a peanut sauce, with different selections of meat.  I highly recommend the goat, it’s amazing! A small bowl is only around $4, and if you’re really hungry, you’ll only have to dole out $7-$8 for a large portion.  They also have Platters, with Ribs, Lamb, Hen, and other delicious meats, and they also offer vegetarian options and salads.  Make sure you try some of Sav’s homemade hot sauce, which is very flavorful and very hot!

Netflix Select Your Major

Many of us are familiar with the movie rental service Netflix. One of the features of Netflix is a recommendation system that recommends movies to the user based on their past selections and the data from similar users. While the system can't always predict perfectly what you will enjoy it is fairly accurate in gauging your tastes and using them to find movies or tv shows that you would enjoy. This system uses a technique called collaborative filtering for filtering through the company's vast collection of user data. The system is similar to Amazon's recommender system although a different type of collaborative filtering.

Renaissance Faire

     Last weekend I went to the Kentucky Renaissance Faire over by Louisville and had a great time.  Every year I make it a point to go there and have never had a bad experience.  Not only was the weather perfect last weekend, but I highly enjoyed the various staff, shows, and vendors.  Also, there were so many different kinds of people there in different costumes that it made me think about how multi-cultural and accepting the platform of a Renaissance Faire can be. 
     Originally, a Renaissance Faire was meant to celebrate a very specific time period within European history.  Now, however, almost any fantasy or historical costume can be found walking around the festival grounds.   I know I saw people dressed up in Elizabethan costumes, as 18th century scientists, barbarians, fairies, demons, dragons, even pirates.  Anything seemed possible and no one argued over it or seemed to pass judgment.   What impressed me more was that everyone was mingling together peacefully and truly having a great time.  

Gaming Platforms

            Earlier this week, some people heard me declaring my intense dislike towards the evil known as Thomas Edison and asked me to do my blog on why I consider him to be a mustache-twirling arch villain.  As much as I’d love to rant about why he’s a lying thief, that will have to wait until next time, because I’d much rather rant about people ranting about something near and dear to my heart; video games.

            Before we get into this, I want to say that I’m stuck in the awkward age where I’m too young to have grown up with the 8-bit games that made the industry what it is today, but am too old to have played my first Pokemon game on a Nintendo 3DS.  My nostalgia period is 2001-2007 on the PS1 and PS2, with a few outliers like Spyro, Final Fantasy VII and Gameboy Color games. Now that you have the appropriate background, here’s the reason for my blog.

Oh Statistics… How I Despise You…

Getting into the first week of statistics, life was moving along pretty well. There were very few glitches in the blackboard system of things (minus the fact that the notes for the lectures had gone AWOL). Minor issues resolved things were moving along quite well. I received the information from the other assisting instructor that she needed our proctor information for the exam that we are due to take by July 7.

Back on Track....

So it looks like summer is back in session for me again! I was hoping to get by without having to take any courses this summer but due to some unforeseen circumstances I am enrolled in classes once again. There is a bright side to this though, they are ALL online once again J!!!! I couldn’t be more excited! (I know, I know, it sounds really nerdy to be excited for school but the advantages to being able to take online classes outweighs having to take classes on campus!) I have the ability to work around thirty hours a week here in the Dean’s Office at the College of A&S. I couldn’t have asked for a better job or a better place to work! With the fun, easy going attitude of the staff and faculty in the office, I have only the warm summer air to blame; it just makes this the most enjoyable workplace I have ever worked!

Bonds

Bonding experiences come in many forms. Maybe it's going on a father-son trip or the relationship accumulated with a friend over the years. For me, the result is something I can't quite put into words, but I know it's the there. A certain feeling of mutual closeness through shared experiences and feelings. This weekend, I spent several hours in a recording studio with many people; some friends, some practically strangers. Music's ability to bond one another proved to be very powerful. 

The Case of the Awesome Web Framework, or why jQuery is Fantastic

Hi, I'm Dustin Mays, a student developer in A&S Computing Services. For the past two or three months, I've been hacking away at a super-sekrit web app for a researcher here at A&S. Since I've previously only targeted traditional offline computer environments, and had no prior web development experience, I had no idea what I had gotten myself into. Unlike traditional software development, web development is, for lack of a better word, "rough". Before I get to the meat of my post, allow me to give you a little background (if you're familiar with software development, feel free to skip the next two or three paragraphs).

Oxford Rewrite

For those of you that have used UK's writing center before, you may be familiar with the Oxford scheduling system. All in all, its a rather advanced system that matches the best qualified consultants with the needs of the clients based on the answers to a few questions.

Due some technical and administrative issues with the system, as well as a change in requirements by the new administration at the Writing Center Oxford will be receiving a major rewrite. The new system will be much simpler. It will no longer do any advanced matching, leaving the selection of consultants up to the clients. This means we can do away with the list of questions asked everytime an appointment is made.

Our plan is for the new version of Oxford to be written as a drupal module. This does several things for us. First of all it will show off drupal, a technology we're excited to be using. Secondly, it will allow our entire team to become more experienced with drupal and module development. Those two aspects will help us to meet one of our new goals here at A&S computing, namely, becoming more agile so that we can rapidly push out useful applications.

Downtown Louisville Activities

If you find yourself in downtown Louisville at any point this summer, make a point to check out 21C Hotel. It's located at 700 West Main Street, defined by 5 foot tall red penguins on an awning above the entrance. It is completely free to go and explore. There are paintings, photographs, sculpture, multimedia, interactive,and video art. Here's a hint, be sure to explore the bathrooms as well. It is a fantastic place to go and spend some time to yourself and perhaps it may touch or inspire you in some way.

 

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