nanila: fulla starz (lolcat: science)
( Mar. 18th, 2014 09:59 pm)
I felt the urge to rewrite my introduction so I thought I’d use it as a starting point for a Subscription Meme, as I haven’t seen one going around for a while.

I’ve made a template, which I’ve filled out very wordily below. Please feel free to adapt it to your wishes, and please link this post wherever you like. (Please participate or share? I'm going to feel very sad if this entry sits here alone with 0 comments...)

Subscription Meme template:
<b>People in this journal</b>
<b>About my job</b>
<b>Some random facts</b>
<b>Things I like to do</b>
<b>Social media usage</b>
<b>>Subscriptions, access and commenting</b>
<b>What I’d like to get from my participation here</b>

My responses! )
nanila: wrong side of the mirror (me: wrong side of the mirror)
( Nov. 26th, 2015 09:41 pm)
An assortment of dSLR photos from Tenerife. Most of this first lot were taken after I arrived on Sunday, as I didn't have much time otherwise to take photos apart from my daily balcony selfie.

My foot, framed by my flowy black dress, as I walk through the sand.

Walking around Costa Adeje )

And some photos from my phone. I ran every morning I was in Adeje. It was such a pleasure. There's wide stone promenade that winds for several kilometres along the waterfront with lots of places where you can dip down and run on the sand for a spell if you like.

Having time to myself is a rare and precious luxury. I reveled in being able to roll out of bed, put on my running gear and just go.

Came the dawn.

Early morning running around Costa Adeje )

A bit of R&R )

Me in my Rosetta mission t-shirt on my last morning in Tenerife, soaking up the sun.
Tenerife balcony
Me in another dress, on my balcony. Did I mention I only brought dresses to wear at this meeting? YAY DRESSES.

The Operations Review is over. I have completed one presentation. Tomorrow, the Cross-Calibration meeting begins, and I do my second presentation.

I have been running on the beach before the dawn both mornings so far. I have eaten ALL THE THINGS because this resort is all-inclusive with the food and the drinks. I have been swimming in, and lounging by, the pool with my fellow lady engineer/programmer/scientist colleagues. I have done a great deal of work, including some on-the-fly analysis that I've just put into tomorrow's presentation. I'm feeling accomplished.

It just might be rum o'clock.

I'm in Tenerife for, believe it or not, work. I had to arrive a day early because the first instrument team talk on Monday morning is mine.

So this is me after a long Skype conversation with my family, standing on the balcony outside my ridiculously-outsized-for-one-person room, breathing deeply.
One of the oddest things Humuhumu asks for is to eat a piece of raw dried pasta (fusilli, usually).

All of her teeth have come in, so I don't think she's doing it because it feels great on her gums. She will also eat cooked pasta, but she seems to think that the raw stuff is a special treat. I'm curious to know if this is a common thing, as I don't recall ever thinking that raw dried pasta was tasty, or for that matter, raw fresh pasta. Thus, today's Unscientific Poll!

Poll #17071 Raw pasta
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 35

Eating raw dried pasta?

View Answers

14 (40.0%)

No thank you
21 (60.0%)

Eating raw fresh pasta?

View Answers

12 (35.3%)

No thank you
22 (64.7%)

[Block diagram of a "generic" space instrument.]

I'm giving a talk next week* and I needed a block diagram of a generic spacecraft instrument. I made one many moons ago but it looks verry dated now and is also about 400x300 pixels and I can't find the original graphics program file. So I thought, I'll make myself a new one.

I'll probably talk about the slide it's on for a minute and a half, maybe two. I probably shouldn't have spent two hours on this. I'm now trying to justify the time spent to myself by sharing it with the internet. Hi, internet!

If you're wondering what this is, it shows how a set of sensors that measure physical parameters in space (on the right in green, labeled MAGOBS and MAGIBS) are connected to a spacecraft (on the left in gold). The physical parameter, in the case of these two sensors, is the ambient magnetic field.

The FEEs transform the physical parameters measured by the sensors into electrical signals.

The ICU is the instrument control unit, which takes telecommands (TCs) and timing signals from the spacecraft and passes them to the sensors. It also takes the data passed back from the front-end electronics (FEEs) and turns it into nice telemetry packets (TMs) that the spacecraft can then package up and beam to Earth through its communications system.

The PCU is the power converter unit, which takes the standard voltage from the spacecraft (usually +28 Volts) and chops it up into secondary voltages that the instrument FEEs can use (e.g. +/- 1.5 Volts)

It all looks very simple, no? You wouldn't think this sort of thing would take a dozen years or so to implement and launch would you? Sadly, you would be wrong about that.

* And two the week after that. They are all different. Whyyyy did I think it would be a good idea to sign up to give a group meeting when I already knew I had another two talks to give? /o\
Humuhumu had her first proper birthday party this weekend, on Halloween. We invited two of her friends, both of whom she's known pretty much from birth and both of whom have little brothers who are about Keiki's age. We also invited another friend who just turned one.

We went as full-on as we could manage with the decorations, with Halloween streamers and table decorations and cupcakes. We planned lots of activities, most of which turned out to be unnecessary once the first packet of Haribo was breached. Fortunately the weather was good enough for everyone to play outside, where "playing" for the three year olds mostly meant running around in circles screaming incoherently with joy.

Frankenstein's monster and his creatrix.

+14, including many adorable child photos )

In conclusion, children's parties are exhausting to prepare, but a lot of fun to run, mostly because of the pure, unconcealed delight taken in the proceedings by the participants.
nanila: (kusanagi: aww)
( Oct. 29th, 2015 01:31 pm)
Remember those Very Excited Year 4 students that I wrote about (DW/LJ) a few weeks back?

Their thank-you cards arrived yesterday.

Heartfelt and wonderful works of art that they are, I thought they merited scanning in and sharing. I shall treasure them.

"Thank you Dr [nanila]!" by Beattie

+13 )

Yeah, I cried at my desk. <333333
Every year since 2009 I've demonstrated in Instrumentation lab in the autumn term. Instrumentation is a third/fourth year elective Physics course, and normally about half of the students also do the lab.

Every year we have between 10 and 30 students in the lab. Every year a percentage of them is female. At most, about a quarter of them. One abysmal year it was 5%.

This year, we have 14 students. Seven of them are female.

Seven. SEVEN. Half of this third-year lab is FEMALE. We have never even been close to parity before.

And they're good, too, all of the students. Some are stronger than others, of course, but overall the standard is high.


WIN \o/ \o/ \o/
Too tired for word post. Have baby photos instead.

[Keiki wearing a blue bib with Nutella dotted around his face and a big smile showing off his new teeth.]

+3, in which he also discovered speculoos spread )
I'm spoiler-immune AND I read the book before I went to see the film, so I will do everyone who is spoiler-sensitive a favour and simply put this entire post behind a cut.

Spoilers, spoilers everywhere I'm sure )

Still, A++++, will def get on DVD and watch again.