Posted by: Jack | May 18, 2007

A Slow Week

As you may have gathered from the lack of postings this past week, there hasn’t been much going on in my life. Or more accurately, there haven’t been many noteworthy events. Yesterday I did get an offer to join an IT Specialist team as a Level 2 Specialist in Training at the Washington Department of Revenue. I turned down the offer since Anna and I have decided to leave Olympia this fall. Also, after two interviews I suspected that the position would not even come close to utilizing my abilities. I was asked to provide a sample of my coding skills at the second interview by writing a loop that would print the numbers 0 through 9 with no formatting or spacing. I assumed this was just a warm up task which would either eliminate me immediately or lead into a worthwhile challenge. But the interviewers seemed impressed and content when I produced the following code:

|for(int i = 0; i < 10; i++){
| System.out.print(i);
|}

For those unfamiliar with any sort of programming language, a counting loop such as this is one of the most fundamental processes of any language and is therefore among the first things learned. In fact, I probably learned this my junior year in high school. For reference, this would be like someone interviewing for a journalism position and being asked to write any complete sentence.

Despite my humble confidence in my over-qualification for this position, it was nice to receive reassurance of a desire for my skills. The interviews were pretty enjoyable too and at the very least have added to my experience with such processes.

In other news, I’m still running pretty regularly but have abandoned my original plan of steadily working up to a marathon distance by running endless laps around Capitol Lake. Any number of laps over three just became too monotonous and the thought of sixteen consecutive laps (a marathon) was too daunting. So instead I’ve taken to running all over town and gradually increasing the duration of my outings. This is proving to be far more enjoyable and takes me to areas of town I’ve never seen before. I’m taking a few days off right now and on Sunday I intend to surpass my current distance record of 13.1 miles (half marathon).

I invested in some running shorts on which I found a pretty good deal at RunningWarehouse.com. I admit that the transition from about a 10″ to a 1″ inseam was a test of confidence but after a few runs my thighs are reaching a shade just short of blindingly white. As far as functionality, the shorts are wonderful.

After enjoying Carl Sagan’s Contact, save for a questionable ending, I moved on to the non-fiction Pale Blue Dot which I believe was his last book before he died in 1996. It entails an interesting mix of astrophysics and the philosophies of Sagan who as far as I can tell was a theist. However, I should specify that his variety of theism is entirely incompatible with any of the world’s major religions.

I think my favorite topics in this book have been the anthropic principle as well as the ever-present egocentrism that leads to so many misconceptions about our existence. If you’re looking for a book to really get you thinking about your significance in the universe, give this one a try.

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  1. […] my most recent previous post I mentioned that today I would be surpassing my longest running distance which was 13.1 miles or a […]


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