Monday, August 17, 2009

Observations From a Week at Nerd Camp

I write a Christian website but I'm also a geek - and I spent last week with other geeks getting further training on the A/V program I use at the office. It's fun to do something different for a week and getting together with other nerds who have a common goal is always entertaining.

Here are my observations from Nerdling University:

  • Everyone else dresses up. These guys think they are in school and have to dress nicely and ask for permission to use the bathroom. Alternatively, I did not shave all week and had on ugly jeans. I stood out.
  • No ladies. They don't care about A/V - I don't know why. I think they would be welcome in the field and there's no reason they couldn't do it; but, the ladies just don't take an interest in this sort of thing. I suspect it's because they know they would have to work with a bunch of geeky men.
  • Our work is boring and we know it. Well, most of us know it. There's always one guy who actually thinks it's interesting to discuss processor pipeline speeds in comparison to LCD refresh rates or something like that. That guy is boring. That guy sat by me at lunch.
  • The teacher can tell us what is on different pages of the health care bill. I don't think many people in Washington can do that.
  • I'm pretty sure Jim Carrey was in this class in disguise. If he comes out with a film where he plays an A/V programmer I'll know it was true.
  • The class was brainstorming how to visually represent programming in a fourth dimension. I recommended a tesseract. No response.
Interestingly, a tesseract is also a pretty good image
of how my head feels after learning parsing commands.

  • I was late Wednesday morning. No repercussions. (See bullet point one.) It may have cemented me as the class rebel.
  • A comically large bottle of Aspirin is kept in the room. This is a bad sign. When you are told that the array can exist in five dimension you understand what it is for.
  • Each of us learns to program a DVD player through serial interaction and we are given a DVD to use in testing. I was assigned "Lost in Space." A higher destiny was obviously at work.
  • Apparently, I can't go anywhere. I got into a discussion of soteriology with a Catholic and an Armenian (probably). I ducked out as things were heating up. (Which really wasn't fair.)
Bottoms up.

5 comments:

  1. That tesseract is so mesmerizing.... I think I am falling asleee....

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  2. You have no idea how many questions I want to ask concerning what you guys learned. The geek in me is madly curious. Yeah, I'm probably not too far from the guy who enjoys discussing LCD refresh rates, etc, but proud to say that you have probably never heard me talk about it. (although, I do enjoy doing so...)

    I am really curious how deep the class went. How high vs. low level they took you. Oh, and String parsing, btw, sucks. Esp. in C where you have to worry about null characters.

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  3. It's not complex. It's C based and can get tricky - but half of our job is working out the logic of something (how to program a remote when the channel line up changes and each channel needs a genre and a playlist...) rather than the programming. I'm getting good at AMX programming but it's not something I would brag about in front of REAL programmers.

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  4. Who knew the tesseract from A Wrinkle in Time actually references a real thing? (said the girl more interested in lit than A/V)

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  5. I'll bite on the Catholic / Arminian / ?? soteriology discussion!

    Was it about a) how people go from saved to unsaved? or b) some aspect of Christ Himself? or c) some aspect of recognizing one's own or others' salvation? d) some verse or set of verses about which they could center a fruitful discussion / resolution? I'm curious UNICODE strings too but I won't admit that here....

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