(Yeah yeah, right now it’s Saturday but I wrote this on wednesday night so shut up.)
Right now it is Wednesday night I’m starting/finishing/making minimal progress on my 8.03 problem set when I remembered I haven’t updated in a very long time. So I heave the pretty incredible stash of lined paper, problem set pages, 8.03 text book, 8.022 notebook (I know, I’m cheating) off my lap, open up notepad, and commence my play-by-play of tonight’s festivities. I will probably spice this horrible idea for an entry up with some shenanigans from weeks/days past, or maybe I will just go to sleep. For those playing along at home, here is Pset 8 in all its glory.
I really can’t say why this problem set is taking me so long. But let it be known that I really hate multi-part problems.
The time is 2:52am. I am really quite ashamed to say I’ve been working on this since 8ish. I’ve finished problems 1 and 2. :/
Is this really 7 hours worth of work? God I hope not.
Come to think of it, a part of that time was spent watching a completely irrelevant open courseware lecture by Walter Lewin on neutron stars, and now much more of it will be spent writing this entry! Is this irony? I can never tell anymore.
Slight derailment due to people. Time is now 4:55am. I know, I know.
On to #3.
Now I remember why I had 8.022 open. I like the way we calculate inductance in 8.02 better than 8.03. The lovely thing about physics is that as no one beefs about how you do a problem as long as you do a problem. Which is certainly not the case in engineering. Yet another derailment. I stare at part b. Inductance is nothing more than the result of geometry, I say. “All the buns are blank!” says Mitch. I turn the volume down on my laptop.
5:04am. I’ve figured it out but there is a slight snag. SI units are a strange beast to me in E+M.
5:10am. Still thinking about SI units.
My photography class (4.343) did a workshop on four-point lighting a few mondays ago (we only meet on mondays 7-10pm). I had my camera with me, so I turned into our unofficial photographer of the evening as we tested different lighting setups.
After a brief intro we dove right in. Dan, the ever delightful tech guy, shows us the do’s and don’ts, the ins and outs of each of our studio lights (which incidentally are available on loan which I am very excited about).
The lights are bright, he tells us, and they can get quite hot. Here are some gloves. Don’t burn yourself, don’t get electrocuted. That can be embarrassing.
He talks about the quality of light, and how we can achieve softer or harsher lighting.
You see, four-point lighting consists of four(4) lights placed in strategic locations as to create the most natural and flattering look for a photographic subject. It’s a variation of the classic three-point lighting often used in film. The four lights are the key light, the fill light, the backlight, (not to be confused with) the background light. Key light is the strongest light source in the picture, it is pointed directly at the subject and used to accentuate curves of the face (provides high contrast). The fill light is used to control this contrast and is generally positioned so as to illuminate the otherwise dark shadows in the figure. A stronger fill light would reduce the contrast while a weaker one would increase it. The backlight is what makes the subject “pop” out of the frame of his background and appear more 3-D and immediate. It is placed behind the subject and maybe to one side if that’s what you prefer. Finally, the background light (which is not a component of 3-pt lighting) lights the background of the picture. In this case, an old, slightly discolored blank wall.
I stole the following picture to further illuminate(lol, get it, illuminate? i’m awesome) the situation:
Thanks, Yale film school!
So we all know how a chair looks under a 700 watt bulb but how does a person?
Meet MIT undergrad in Course 6 and model/filmstar David. Today we’re going to take David’s senior high picture.
This is David under only a key light. Notice the harsh shadows across his face. Though this might be a look you want in a shot, it is not the look we want.
David sees the fill light. All other lights are switched off.
Did you know? Photons have momentum! The momentum of a photon is its energy E divided by c. The mass of a photon in any frame but its rest frame is E/c^2.
The more you know!
A backlight. David is brooding and mysterious.
The background light. David is a shape in the dark.
Putting some of them together:
Key and fill and nothing else. Notice how David is flat and appears to be a part of the background.
Classic three-point lighting:
Now throw in the background light and voila:
Anyways, I think this stuff is cool. I’m going to go on a portrait rampage shortly.
First thing’s first, though.
It’s 5:26am. I’m still here at my little desk. I look up Maxwell’s Equations in integral form on Wikipedia. This is a new low for the evening.
Find expressions for the velocity and the characteristic impedance of the line…
I’d probably know how to do this if I’d gone to lecture today. I look up the meaning of “characteristic impedance”. Out comes Bekefi and Barrett from under a pile of crap. Luckily on the first page I flip to there are the underlined words “The characteristic impedance z_0”. Cool.
6:00am. I have a done-pile and a not-done-pile. The done-pile gets bigger as Problem 3 goes on top. I crack my window open a bit. It’s not too cold today, the morning air is refreshing. Google predicts a high in the mid-60s today. I think about all the time I will have tonight. Which I will consequently waste on video games and checking my email a million times a second. However, Wikipedia is not going to tell me how to do problem 4.
6:00am-6:30am. I did nothing. I kid you not I did absolutely nothing. I completely forgot about the Pset. I stumbled onto the admissions webpage and left dumb comments on people’s blogs. Kids, don’t do this. Don’t be me.
6:30am. Realizing that (^) made me feel guilty and I read part b of #4. Meanwhile, arrives my least favorite (most favorite? it depends) part of an all-nighter (at this point I’m either extremely stressed out and counting down the hours til Unified or feeling really darn good and at peace with the world). I think I like it today. What I mean is, the sun is coming up. In the way that it does on cloudy days when everything turns blue, then blue, then more blue. And streets and houses light up in that sleepy way and you start to see as well as hear the occasional car that drives by.
You’re looking at my lucky bamboo and the world outside. Life is good.
As much fun as it is to watch the sun come up from underneath an avalanche of work and behind the bars of your dorm room window, it’s a least a little better at the beach.
I find that I really can’t live too far inland. I feel like I’d suffocate. Not that I go to the beach all the time or anything, I just like to know it’s there. Luckily, Cambridge, MA is less than an hour away from a couple of very nice beaches. Crane Beach in the town of Ipswich, MA, is really very beautiful and if you go on a misty/rainy day you have that whole big thing to yourself. Plus the rain, which is great. I guess I’d say it’s a bit more touristy in that it’s kept really pristine and designed with people in mind, and mind you, there will be people. It can get pretty crowded. It closes at sunset. The other beach that I’ve been to is on Plum Island (the website I linked, by the way, is ridiculous) and I guess one could consider it a bit more unadulterated (you know, untamed, wild, free, yeah.) Anyways, this one is harder to get to than crane (which is linked via commuter rail to MIT) so I’ve only been once or twice. A little while back my friend Jesse and I went to watch the sunrise on the beach. Thought I’d share some pictures:
I took lots of really trite pictures of the sunrise.
Jesse took a picture of me taking really trite pictures of the sunrise. (he takes photo with me)
Also, we roasted hot dogs and marshmallows. This is his picture, not mine.
We headed back around 8am.
Part d: Check your results by using the general expression for voltage reflection given in lecture.
6:51am. Damn. I didn’t go to lecture today. I improvise a bit.
Armed with the cool confidence provided by my good results, I plow through part e with effortless ease.
This is where my lab partner comes in. But she is sound asleep. I send her an email:
To : [email protected]
Subject : KELLY WAKE UP IT’S TIME FOR SCIENCE
—– Message Text —–
kelly wake up wake up it’s time to do the lab wake up wake up lab lab lab
As it turns out my email failed to wake her up. I was disappointed.
To : [email protected]
Subject : :/
—– Message Text —–
It’s kind of an awkward time of day. If I go to sleep I’ll likely feel more tired than if I just stayed up.
An hour of Weboggle it is.
Hope you had fun on my all-nighter!
P.S. Today’s toothpaste for dinner is highly relevant.
P.P.S. Oh no, I forgot. 8.03 is Wave Mechanics and Optics. Physics III. Maybe I will get some coffee.