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Monthly Archives: March 2006

On The Success of LaTeX


I suspect that the success of LaTeX–and its ubiquity as a format for thesis-writing–is in part due to the fact that learning its arcane subtleties is a wonderful source of procrastination. What a glorious escape from having do to actual paper-writing!

AskMefi on Language Learning


A fun thread on mefi this morning, “What is the most efficient way to learn the native language of a country while traveling there on your own?”. One of the most interesting parts of this thread is that some of the commenters seem to have a natural feel for the language learning techniques I only […]

Thesis Blues


Ugh. I should be busily typing away at my thesis proposal(s!) right now. But I’m not. Perhaps it wasn’t the best idea to plan on finishing my MS Thesis and proposing my PhD Thesis in the same semester. Hrm. Well, my wife has her MS Thesis finishing up by summer too, so at least we […]

Tagging, Searching, Linking


categorization vs ranked search. the old google-vs-yahoo! war of 1998-1999. it struck me the other day that these two paradigms aren’t as orthogonal as we make them out to be in our minds. full-text search is really just categorization where the categorical tags are the words in the text. it’s a very rough heuristic, but […]

Gentoo 2006.0


Dusted off my old 5-year-old laptop–thinking it might make a good server–low power consumption, built-in UPS.� The new Gentoo Live CD is very slick.� Too bad it doesn’t quite work: The LiveCD auto-starts a gnome session.� Too bad it doesn’t allow the screen resolution to be any higher than 640×480.� This size is unfortunately too […]

a short braindump.


hmm, haven’t posted anything in a while. a smattering of notes from life: my mother-in-law just took a trip to Yunnan, China to take photos. I’ve posted some of them in this flickr set went on ISI’s bi-annual AI retreat a few weekends ago. a few interesting things that I may fill out later: SIMILE […]