08 11 05 737 W - + 89 - 102 Project's end

For the past 10 weeks, I've been busting ass on these two projects... One, a visual user control designed to be able to drop into any application and be instantly usable, but powerful and entirely customizable.  So I chugged away with this corporate-sounding mantra pumping through my veins, my fingertips, "Maximum functionality, minimum setup".  I've used other people's components before, and about the coolest thing in the world is an empty constructor.  No setup, no tweaking, it just automatically works the way everyone thinks it should.

The other project, a program that uses that control.  Bosslady is going to push the executable and some screenshots through internal review so she can stick'm on a web page.  The manual way of doing things with the particular chunks of data I was working with were, get a set, put it into excel, customize a graph, save as jpeg, rinse and repeat.  With a single text file having around 6000 sets, well, that's... um... tedious.  I wrote a program that skips excel, streamlines the graphing process, and displays all the plots you want it to.  Got an email from Bosslady, "This used to take 6 weeks.  Now it takes about 6 minutes."  It's true, my code outputs 1000 GIF files a minute.  That's speed right there.

Had to give a presentation today.  I hate PowerPoint, so I passed out some reference slides with the featureset, hooked my laptop up to the big screen, and talked from the back of the room.  This is how you change the level of detail.  These are the scaling modes.  These are the colors, the overlaying option, the comparisons, the batch...  I was nervous as hell, I hate public speaking in general, but I talked about having no engineering background, no idea what kind of ways people would want the graph to look... So I wrote options, options everywhere.  Tweak this, zoom that, make this part blue.  How people would want it to look, how to tweak it for what they were looking for.  I tangented on the various things people might want to do, analyze where the output was strong and where it was weak, flip through multiple graphs on the same scale... And I showed them how to do that, the right set of mouse clicks that would get things moving, so you could see what you were looking for with the briefest glance at the graph.

It was like this 10 minute sentence, I kept forgetting my own featureset, glancing at my notes, and remembering them, talking about them, springing from one to the other with a "Oh wait, this is cool, Lemme show you this."  Thought I sucked.

However, several people pointed out, after all our presentations were done, how useful the stuff we did was.  My program and control, in particular.  An intel guy said that it was perfect for him, he had no scientific background, but I'd set it up so it would be easy for him to get what he needed to.  Bosslady talked about the built-in potential for real-time streaming of new input overlaid on old data.  I kinda felt all smug.  The lot of us scraggly interns were heralded as genius, sent from the heavens above as deliverers of gorgeous, streamlined, easy to use leetness.

Plus, we all got a nifty coin thing as a sort of mini-plaque for our accomplishments this summer.

Staying two more days before the job's over.  Have to iron out a bug or two, sexify the user interface (which is to say, make it a little more straightforward and intuitive, a few less subtle, non-intuitive side effects to button clicking), then spend a day outprocessing.  I fired off an email to The Boss regarding the realization that quitting involved paperwork too.

"Kind of precludes angry spontaneous quitting, doesn't it?  Like, 'Screw the lot of you, I've had it up to HERE with all this crap.  I quit, goddamnit!  I'll be at post all day tomorrow filling out paperwork, and them I'm gone!'  Then spending a day fuming, menacingly scribbling your social security number a couple hundred times on a thousand different forms..."

That's gonna be me, Wednesday or so.  Only without all the "Screw you guys." More like, "Well... done now."


I don’t think the nausea is from waking up at night. I’ve been doing that for a good couple of years now, I feel I’m pretty well settled into it. I think it’s actually work itself, or the people involved. I sit in the parking lot and kind of psyche myself up to go in. Sometimes I wait for the vomity-feeling to pass, then I face the bottom-feeding miscreants that troll the caverns of wal-mart. It’s an anti-people thing. I get wierded out by, y’know….humans.
Oz - 08 16 05 - 09:09

Also, on a more righteous note, tell Blue I’m more than stoked to bring her the funny from my word-speakin’. Or whatever it is she digs about reading me. I’ll put it on the list and pick up more for her while I’m out.
oz - 08 16 05 - 09:24

Woot! Bring on the funny. It’ll be the hots!
Blue - 08 16 05 - 22:53

http://google.com Fine information, many thanks to the author. It is puzzling to me now, but in general, the usefulness and significance is overwhelming. Very much thanks again and good luck! 6)))
Arron () (URL) - 04 18 12 - 08:09

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