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Life, And Other Inconsequential Things

Time to play catch-up. Many things have happened since my last post. Not the least is the announcement that the company I am working for will be shutting its doors by the years end. It affects the regular employees more than it does me but it's still not great news. So off I go again into the land of the recruiters.

Star Trek

The Star Trek Tropes project is moving along well. I am cleaning up my previous code and making it more efficient plus adding new functionality to the the graph. I finally solved the mouse click to turn one category of dots opaque for better viewing. Now it's onto developing methods to color the dots instead of using hard-coded domains and ranges. Sometimes the solution eludes me and I rely on the hard coded solution till I solve it.

Wizard World

I'm attending the Wizard World convention this coming weekend. What better place to go and search out potential collaborators for future Pop Culture Data Visualizations. Specifically there is a WhedonVerse panel which I sure I can location some Buffy fans to show the work I did with the Body Count.

Movie Franchises

As always, when time is at a premium, projects get pushed to the back-burner. Once again the movie franchise project gets no love. But at least I've determined its final format. The display will be a scatter-plot with circles plotting the various rankings from movie web sites such as Rotten Tomatoes and IMDB. I want to include a minimum of three rankings, more if possible.

I'm curious to see how various franchises did over the course of their life spans and what the reactions of people and critics were. For instance, Rotten Tomatoes tracks both it's critics rating and an audience rating. Many times they are quite different. I hope to get back to that one soon.


Star Trek Spiral

Work has begun on the Star Trek graph. It's the Buffy Spoke and Wheel which will institute many changes. Creating external css and js files, neutralizing the function names, and pulling data json files. All things I knew needed done but were of secondary importance to getting the graph to display properly.

All necessary improvements as I intend to use this structure for future graphs of TV shows.

It's all about reusability.


Replacement Feet

This week the last of the little rubber feet came off my laptop stand. The computer now slides easily on the table. Makes it difficult to type a coherent sentence. So I began checking into replacement feet.

I was at Best Buy and inquired into replacement feet. They had none on stock. They asked what stand I had but I couldn't remember the exact model so they couldn't do anything. Then I was told that there might not be any parts to order even if I did have the model. This trip was a waste of time and very discouraging.

Back at home I looked up how to make replacement feet. The video most whacked out was one was using a low temperature hot-glue gun to build up glue into replacement feet. That sounded like it had a 50/50 chance of working.

Then I came across a video that suggested going to the hardware store and purchasing little rubber or felt pads. They come in all sizes and they're really cheap. Home Depot is nearby so off I went.

An hour later I am able to type on the computer without it slipping around with each keystroke. Much happier working conditions now.


General update

Just noticed it's been a week since my last post. Haven't been that busy, just been keep mildy occupied.

Got my github fixed yesterday. It was a case of unfamiliarity with the command structure of git & github. Paul helped me get it all straightened out and many commands were written into my cheatsheet. I'll need to figure out a better organization for all those commands. It's said if you have a background in Unix, git and github will make sense. To me, it's the most unintuitive system I've ever run across. I'll be happy when I cross that crest in the learning curve and stop making those n00b mistakes.

Did a few more improvements on Buffy. Even though it is finished, there's always room for improvements. The source line wandered off the right edge of the screen and was fixed by putting in a wrapper to envelope the entire html code. It now keeps the line within some sensible bounds. I did get the source line from butting up to the chart but it's a cheat. Need to work on the positioning structure of html & css. And I finally got the character images to come up whenever their button is pressed.

Took a break from watching Star Trek. The data needed tended to as I had accumulated many entries that did not have a proper trope. I sorted out many of the attraction tropes moving many to love/kiss/hug tropes. I need to do the same with the fight tropes but that may be a daunting task. Found there are ten-fold number of fighting tropes as there are attraction tropes. I decided to incorporate a tag system. That will enable me to sort the list by keywords and see how deep I need to divide the tropes. Currently I'm at 1499 entries and I'm only on the third episode of the second season. Probably looking at over 5,000 entries when I'm finished. And that's with only tracking a few particular tropes.

Working on getting pip installed so I can try out Jürgen's new python script. I needed a script that would scrub a web page and return all it's links. The idea is to pull down the main page of links from particular sci-fi shows for comparison. I was going to ask Paul to assist but the github fix took much longer than we expected.


Star Trekkin' Across The Universe

One more episode of the first season of Star Trek: TOS to watch. Then I can clean up the data and send it to Jürgen for review. After seeing the data, he will determine what will be the best tropes to about for our paper. On the other hand, I will include all the tropes I've collected in the d3js visualization.

With each episode I log I see how many beloved tropes are either overstated as to the number times they happened or happened many, more times than people think they did. I need to determine how to display these not single, as well as, stacked viewing.

The biggest misconception I see (at least in the first season) is the assured demise of redshirts in landing parties. Though I believe it got worst in seasons two and three. The trope I was interested in was data pad. Although it didn't get it's name, Padd, till NextGen, the device was prevalent throughout the first season. It was a heavily used set-piece throughout the first season. Waiting to see if that trend continues.

Although most people think Kirk bedded a different woman every episode, I'd say his exploits have been highly inflated. The best Kirk did was holding hands and getting a kiss from Edith Keeler.

Getting ready to watch the last episode of season one. Data will be cleaned and compiled then sent off to Jürgen. Then it's onto season two.