Recently I had to do some proofreading for the professor I work for. I may not be the best writer ever, but one thing I do know something about is punctuation. Proofreading other people's work has really made me realize how well my high school's system worked for me.

They had this system of teaching the rules for commas that they called the constructs. There were 9 rules and they each were numbered. It isn't a system used anywhere else, and so no one knows what I'm talking about when I call something a #1 (except at MacDonalds) but at least I know when something's right or wrong. I think it is easier to remember the rules if you know exactly how many there are and if you remember them in an order. If I can't assign a number to a comma I see, then it doesn't belong there. I am starting to forget and unfortunately I can't find any kind of reference anywhere. I think punctuation is a problem for people in general, and if my school has a solution that worked for me they should share it so that it can help others.

I've also been reading this book, Eats, Shoots and Leaves, about punctuation, and the author doesn't even seem to have as sound a grasp of commas as she could have with my teachers' rules. The downside to the book is that it is British, so some of their conventions are different than ours.
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Restaurant Ideas

Over the years I've come up with a few restaurant ideas. Some of them are completely silly and do not require deep thought. Others I think are actually brilliant in a way. Some are in between, but beware that in general some things that sound crazy might be a great idea that people are just not expecting to hear (So crazy it just might work). I had a new one recently that I think might be the best. I'll list all 4 in chronilogical order.

The restaurant where "You Get Your Check By The Time You're Done or Your Meal is Free" and that's the name of the restaurant. That basically sums it up. This one requires no thought about what a terrible name that is or how you'd deal with desert. It is just something I like to say when I'm sitting around waiting for a check, that this place should exist.

My next idea isn't actually mine. It was based on an idea of Monzy's. You know that carival game where you shoot the water gun into the clown's mouth and the balloon blows up? The idea is to build that game into urinals in a men's room. This would make a great gimmick for a bar. People would come because it's such a crazy gimmick and they'd have to drink lots if they wanted to play. Plus they might have better aim. It was Monzy's concept to build a urinal game. In fact he built one, called You're in Control (Urine Control) and published a paper in a human-computer interaction conference.

My third idea was a chain themed restaurant where each branch has a different theme. If you've visited one Hard Rock Cafe you've seen them all.

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I'm sure you've all been waiting anxiously for a new entry. It's been a really busy time since I moved, and I just haven't had the time. I'm all moved in. The house is pretty nice. Not enough people have come by to see me here, but I don't spend much time at home anyway. I spend a lot of time at AEPi just because it is on my way home and my friends are there to get food or play video games or talk.

I've been working really hard. I may have mentioned it before, but basically my goal this summer is to top every expectation Randy could have for me so that he'll have no choice but to hire me for the year. That's pretty hard to do since Randy's expectations of people aren't based on thinking they are people with human limitations but tools to accomplish what he wants done right now. I suppose having people work for you like me, who you don't have to manage too much, is a good thing, but it can cause you to underestimate the difficultly and effort involved and thus underappreciate the good deal you have.

As part of the DARPA project I'm working on, I'm running an experiment. This is an extremely difficult experiment to run. I have to make the code changes, find the subjects, run the subject, crunch the numbers, and if they are bad decided how to fix it. Running the subject alone take me 1 1/2 to 2 hours and requires a process with about a billion steps. This week is the CVE (context validation experiment) where our collaborators from Honeywell are visiting. Basically that means that I was up running subjects until 1am, I worked (mostly running subjects) continuously today from 9 to 9, and I'll probably do the same thing tomorrow.

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Keywords:Stage3 | ETC | Busyness | Nostalgia
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Thought Repository » June 2004