Reflection: 2013 IAP

This IAP was a ton of fun, and I was also able to get quite a bit done. The highlight was in my UROP, which is a continuation of what I was doing in the past semester. In late November, there was a power outage that reintroduced a previously-fixed bug into the computing cluster that I used, which caused various issues for my photonic crystal calculations. After trying several different workarounds, it wasn't until two weeks ago that I figured out how to properly route around the issue; when that happened, I was quite happy to have sensible, working flux spectrum calculations. Some people from the main UROP office also came to chat with me about what I am doing for my UROP, which was cool. At the same time, I was able to start wrapping up my project from the 2011 fall semester by creating more proper figures for the work I did then.
On the side, I worked on a video for the MIT-K12 initiative, which is a partnership between MIT and the Khan Academy. I was able to create a video about friction aimed at middle school students, and I'm fairly pleased with how it turned out. It should become official in a few weeks, at which point I will have either an update to this post or a separate follow-up post to include links to that and the result of the UROP chat (whenever that gets finalized).
I was also able to start typesetting lecture notes for 8.04 — Quantum Physics I for use by MIT OCW. I'm working with two other friends on that as well to get it done more efficiently.
The last week of IAP was particularly hectic. Along with the UROP chat, I was able to participate at the Diversity Summit as part of a panel of students with disabilities. Also, I helped to organize the SPS and UWIP joint Physics Lightning Lectures event.
There were a few things I was not able to do, but those can be done later, and I am glad that I gave myself enough time to rest and take life at a more relaxed pace compared to that of the semester. That said, this blog will likely reenter a sort of hibernation once the semester starts next Tuesday (and another post on that will likely occur on Monday or Tuesday of this coming week). Anyway, for this weekend, I am just going to relax and enjoy the large televised football game tomorrow!

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