# Htam::Diary

 Themes: { PHOTO, SURF, TT, VB, TACIT, CS, SCIENCE, SPORT, BIBLE, IM, HTAG, MATH, COMP, FAITH, SYSOP, TEST } =
Years: { 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 }
Pages: { newest, 165, 164, 163, 162, 161, 160, 150, 145, 140, 135, 130, 127, 126, 125, 124, 123, 120, 115, 110, 105, 100, 90, 80, 70, 60, 50, 40, 30, 20, 10, 1 }
Total 3295 posts.
 htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-14 20:53:55 Open House, Part II 0 comments This Monday, I did some math, and then went to school for the second open house.  Just like last time, I went to lunch with them, showing them how to get food, where to sit, and then talked and answered questions during the meal—with professors around.  Then after a short tour of IPAM, the grad students split up into two groups and took the prospective students around campus while telling them more interesting things and answering questions.  Then they had time to meet with professors so I did some work in the department, despite being extremely tired.  In the evening, we walked for like 30 minutes to Shamshiri, a Persian restaurant, for dinner.  This is the first time (that I can remember) that I am having Persian cuisine.  It was pretty good, but the portions are so large that I am taking half home.  My meal cost more than \$20 dollars, but the math department paid for it. Yay! (For the record, I got Beef Shamshiri, which is a combination of Beef Barg and Beef Koobideh. I liked the Koobideh much better, and instead of the combination I can replace Barg with Koobideh for \$6 cheaper.  This will be what I do in teh future probably.)  During dinner we ended up talking a bunch of (not necessarily) interesting math puzzles and riddles.  I'm finally at home, so tired.  I'll unwind a bit and then go sleep.[Non Sequitur: Two Envelopes] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-13 20:49:25 [VB] Whole Group 0 comments This Sunday, I studied Hebrews 12 with the high school group.  Jonah was teaching the upper elementary group.  Neither of us wanted to teach for 1.5 hours, so we sang some songs.  I played the guitar, it was horrible.  But I guess being great is not necessarily the point.  Anyway, then in the afternoon, we played volleyball as a whole group.  I think we haven't done this since last summer.  It's good to do it again.  I don't know if this is a one-time thing or it will be recurring.  But anyway, I might not be able to play too much next quarter anyway.  Afterwards, we went to dinner at Phoenix.  I sort of miss just spending some time with brothers and sisters.  I took a break from doing work this weekend.[Non Sequitur: Word Puzzle Universal Wrapping Paper] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-12 21:06:05 Rest 0 comments This Saturday, I went to Bible study as usual.  Afterwards, we had dim sum at Lunasia (?).  It was pretty good.  Then I went to buy groceries at 99, talked to Dad on the way home, and then relaxed a bit.  I prepared for teaching tomorrow, and played some hymns.  Today is a pretty low-key day.  I've reached the low end of my work cycle, fairly ready to go back up again next week.[Non Sequitur: Two-Story Batman Snow Sculpture] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-11 21:15:48 Last Day 1 comment This Friday, I took care of some financial items, where I wrote a treatise on this subject using words like "without loss of generality" and "pigeon hole principle."  Then I went to school for my last class with Balmer—afterwards we all clapped, since it was such a good course.  After lunch, and class with Igor, I waited around to talk to Igor for a bit.  I also played a little bit of table tennis in the mean time.  Afterwards, I talked to some colleagues, printed out some more papers to read, and then wrapped things up for the term and came home.  I realized I was really hungry, so I picked up something quick at school first.  I came home around 7 PM.  At night, Steve and Tammy delivered a car here for me to borrow over the weekend.  And today marks the end of the 7-day period where Caleb called me and talked every day.[Non Sequitur: QR code graves] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-10 20:59:19 Coming Down from the Treadmill 0 comments This Thursday, I was not feeling well enough to jog, so I decided to walk extended distance.  But since I walked to Westwood, I decided to eat breakfast there (at Denny's).  I read some papers and solved some (small) problems.  I went to school in the late afternoon to print out some papers and attend the last GSO seminar.  Remember how last term I crashed at the end going from working extremely much to not having to work at all?  This time I'm trying to slowly come down from the treadmill.  I haven't been as productive this week, partially on purpose.  Let's see if I can come down without stumbling.  May the Lord be my strength.As part of my relaxation, I've been looking into financial matters.  Caleb got me to be OCD about mint again.  I also called a company to figure out some details.  On a completely different note, I've been (re)watching the first (fourth) Star Wars movie over the last few days.  I finally finished it today.  I remember when we were frosh, David Barmore was surprised I haven't seen Star Wars, so he brought back all 3 movies (I think on VHS) after Christmas break, and I watched them during Winter quarter of our frosh year.  I still remember most of the plot of the first movie, but it was still fun to watch again.  Plus the music is great.[Non Sequitur: Best Way to Use the Last Five Minutes Each Day] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-09 19:57:58 Open House, Part I 0 comments This Wednesday, I left algebra early to go meet with prospective grad students.  Today is the first of two open houses, where students come to see UCLA and meet with professors and talk to grad students.  A select few of us had lunch with them, and then showed them around campus and answered questions.  Balmer joined my table so I got to talk to him a little bit informally, too.  So that was fun.  I I had to miss Igor's class today because of this, and multiple people pointed that out to me, citing how I never skip classes.  Anyway, afterwards, I had an impromptu meeting with Igor for two hours.  Wow!  This caused me to miss the dinner I was supposed to have with these prospectives.  Oh well, I didn't think I should stop him from talking just to go eat dinner with them.  So we continued talking.  At first it was all math, then it became a bit meta including talking about plans for next quarter, summer, and even next year and the year after.  The rough plan is for me to write this paper during spring break, give a talk or two next term, go to a conference during the summer, try to get another paper ready next year, ATC, and then graduate the year after (after my fifth year).  We'll see how this thing turns out.  Afterwards I was so tired and so hungry that I just grabbed something quick to eat at school, and then came home around 7.  I talked to Caleb on the way back, and now I'm going to rest.[Non Sequitur: Everything I Need to Know in Life I Learned from Super Mario] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-08 21:34:45 Sub-Productive Day 0 comments This Tuesday, I am not very productive.  I read some papers, and thought about homological algebra more.  But I did not get any where.  Even though I jogged in the morning, I still decided to walk around for some extra exercises.  I walked to CVS, and also buy lunch from Falafel King.  As for dinner, I cooked for myself.  Caleb called me and we talked for 5 days in a row now.  Haha, I wonder when this will stop.  I was dizzy for multiple parts of the day.  Overall, not a good day at all.  Oh, and Caleb found a glaring typographical error in my CV.  I have since corrected it.[Non Sequitur: Creatively Using Shadows] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-07 20:34:40 Recovery 0 comments This Monday, I felt better, and I walked to school.  Today, Balmer's class was really good again.  Then I had lunch from Cafe Synapse (since I'm a bit tired of the salad I get every lunch from Green House).  After lunch I had Igor's class, talked to him a little after class, got more papers to read, printed them out, briefly looked at them, and then came home.  For the rest of the day, I talked to Dad, Steph, and Caleb Ng.  Now I'm getting ready for bed.  Also, I finally solved a 100x50 wrapping net [DEPRECATED] game in under 2 hours.[Photo: Epic diagram by Professor Balmer in Ma212 (Homological Algebra) obtaining the morphism axiom in the proof that the localization of a triangulated category admits a unique triangulated structure such that localization is exact.][Non Sequitur: Solar Wind bridge] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-06 20:02:22 Rest 0 comments This Sunday, I woke up still feeling dizzy.  So I decided to stay home today.  I did a bit of work, but mostly just relaxed.  I finally had some time to cook for myself.  I miss my mabo tofu.  I have finished compiling exercises for homological algebra.  I'll turn it in tomorrow.  Then I'll be done with that course.  It's been a pleasure taking the class from Balmer.  Of his classes, this one is one of the best.  And his classes are already way above average at UCLA.  So this is saying quite a bit.  At night, Steve stopped by to pick up his car.  I invited in and we ended up talking for a little bit of time—quite a bit considering how late it was for me, but not a lot considering how long I usually talk (to him or to others).[Non Sequitur: Angled Bookshelf] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-05 19:27:50 Dizziness 0 comments This Saturday, I had breakfast in San Gabriel and then went to church early.  I did some work at church waiting for people to show up.  At around 9:45, I started feeling a bit dizzy.  By 10:15, it was pretty bad.  I took my medicine at around 10, and asked people to pray for me at around 10:40.  By 11 it got a bit better and by 11:30 I could walk again.  I haven't been this dizzy for several months now, and the last time I had to take medicine was a month ago.  Anyway, afterwards, I had lunch with Ernest's family (at Mama Lu's—haven't been there in a while), since I was in no condition to drive home yet.  After lunch, I felt much better, so I came home.  I talked to Caleb Ng for about two hours today while driving and then continued after I got home.  Wow, talking two days in a row?  Anyway, I hope I get well soon.[Non Sequitur: Extreme Birdhouse] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-04 20:38:10 Epic Homological Algebra 0 comments This Friday, I had oatmeal for the first time in my life.  I got it at Jamba Juice as a combo with my drink.  Today the class on homological algebra was excellent.  Balmer came up with a technical lemma this morning that allowed him to prove a theorem by using it many times in different cases.  Otherwise each time it was used would require some tricky computations—and the lemma itself was not harder to prove than any single one of these.  It was epic!This evening I finally tutored once again.  It's been tricky scheduling sessions without a car.  But it finally worked out.  Afterwards, with perfect timing, I got a ride with my tutoring client to Steve's place, where I picked up his car and drove back.  Later in the evening Alan came by to pick up his car, which I've been driving for the last few weeks.While tutoring, I made my student derive the derivative of $b^x$ and $\log_b x$ by himself.  $b^x=e^{\ln b^x}=e^{x\ln b}$ was easy, but $\log_b x$ he had to set it equal to $y$, exponentiate with base $b$ of both sides, take natural log of both sides, then solve.  I made him do it in one line and he couldn't.  Then I realized it is not very obvious.  While he was solving more problems, I figured it out.  It's tricky.Change-of-base formula in one line: $\log_b x=\log_b x\frac{\ln b}{\ln b}=\frac{\ln b^{\log_b x}}{\ln b}=\frac{\ln x}{\ln b}$.[Non Sequitur: Hells Angels lock their bench] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-03 20:28:35 Grad Panel 0 comments This Thursday, I went out and jogged in the morning after a one-month hiatus.  After my accident two months ago, I've had some pain in my legs so I stopped jogging.  A month ago I tried it again but it still hurt.  Today I tried it, it was not hurting!  Yay, praise the Lord.  I did not jog much—just 10–15 minutes to start off.  My heart rate at the end of the jog was about 10 beats per minute more than usual—clearly I'm out of shape.Then I went and got breakfast at Whole Foods, bought some groceries, and came home to work.  I did an (optional) "long exercise" for the homological algebra class today.  It was actually fairly illuminating; and it feels good to know that I am getting this stuff, that I could learn theory, and not just ad-hoc clever arguments like in combinatorics.I went to school after 1 and attended combinatorics seminar as usual.  Afterwards, I talked to Adam a bit about homological algebra.  Some how table tennis came up, so I decided to play a bit (with my left hand, of course).  Many people wanted to play me—it feels like the good old days.  I'll probably start playing again next term, when I have more time.I then went to another GSO seminar, which was a very good talk given by Yingkun.  Afterwards, there was the panel of grad students talking about our experiences applying and in grad school for the undergrads in the math department.  The organizers felt it would be good to have someone talk about NSF, so I did.  There were so many kids who came to the panel, I was really surprised.  It went on for quite some time.  At one point another grad student on the panel said, "we should probably stop talking and let them ask questions, since it's close to Jed's bed time."  Hahaha, anyway, I am so tired now, but I am finally home, and I should relax a bit and go sleep soon.[Non Sequitur: Time Tower] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-02 20:40:47 Paper Outline 0 comments This Wednesday, I went to school around 8 and came home after 3.  This is considered long day for me.  I used to have long days on Fridays, since I have two hours of class in the morning instead of 1 or 0.  Now this week and next I have two hours in the morning every day.  (Incidentally, the homological algebra class today was excellent.  I miss this level of good teaching that Balmer used to have: Even with a hiccup today, it was still very enjoyable, understandable, and enriching.)  So It's as long as before.  But wait, there's more!  On Wednesdays I also meet with Igor.  So it's even longer.  Today we talked about #P-completeness some more.  We also discussed the outline of our paper.  Time to start writing?  Not yet.  Since he'll be away for two weeks starting in 1.5 weeks, he suggests that I should keep thinking for a week and discuss with him next week, before starting to actually write.[Non Sequitur: Math Professor Charged with Urinating] htam@76.173.184.*2011-03-01 20:20:44 "Research" 0 comments This Tuesday, I woke up at 5 but misread the clock and thought it was still 4, so I stayed in bed for a while, and then realized the truth and got up (still before 6, though).  Besides doing the usual stuff, I also continued doing "research" for the retirement fund stuff, since I have one shot at this.  Indeed, last calendar year is the only one I actually have TA salary—if I miss the 4/15 deadline, I will not be able to invest in an IRA for another few years.  Yay fellowship![Non Sequitur: Fire Chief Gets Ticket Helping Injured Woman] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-28 21:01:08 Retirement 0 comments This Monday, I went to school at around 8.  I randomly bumped into Sid at Jamba Juice.  We talked a little, I had breakfast, and then I started reading papers in the room where I will have class at 10.  Homological algebra is back, after a 3-week hiatus.  I enjoyed the lecture today.  We've moved on to (pre)triangulated categories.  It's fun.  Then I had lunch by myself in the grad lounge (since no one joined me), and went to Igor's class afterwards.  Then I saw Hakan, and we decided to hit the table tennis ball back and forth a bit while talking about our lives.  It's been a long time since I've touched a paddle or hit a ball.  I should start again.  I eventually came home around 4, having been at school for 8 hours!  Then I spent quite a bit of time looking at IRA stuff that Caleb Ng sent me.  Since I'm on fellowship now, the last tax year might be my last chance to do this for another few years.[Non Sequitur: Cat Therapist] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-27 21:52:18 Throat Hurts 0 comments This Sunday, I woke up so tired and throat hurts.  But yesterday was still so worth it.  I translated for breaking of bread at first, since I am pretty much doing it most weeks now.  When Steph came and sat next to me, however, I asked her to do it (despite the fact that she is teaching Sunday school and doesn't really want to do both at the same time).  That's what she gets for making my throat hurt so much.  During the message, as usual, I couldn't stay in the whole time, for the last half hour I went outside to get fresh air.  When I went to get some water, I met Rachel, and eventually we decided to sit down on a bench and "talk."  But since both our throats were hurting, I'm not sure if we can count what we were doing talking.  Oh well.  It's been a while since we even saw each others' presence anyway.  I stayed after church as usual, cleaned up, took out all the trash, and locked up the building.  Then I came home and just relaxed for the rest of the day.  I started watching Chariots of Fire a week or two ago.  Today I finally finished it.  Some of the scenes made my eyes water a little.  I also came across a very nerdy line by a nerdy character on a show when she was describing her boy friend: "He makes me feel like the highest point in the electromagnetic spectrum."  Hahaha, so funny.[Non Sequitur: Caltech Basketball Stops 310-Game Losing Streak] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-26 23:57:56 Stephanie 0 comments This Saturday, I went to church for the special meeting.  Afterwards, I had lunch with Alex, Fang, Steve, and Tammy at Gourmet Island.  It's nice to eat with them again—it's been quite some time.  We talked about scifi TV shows quite a bit.  Then I went to buy some groceries.  I thought to myself, "wouldn't it be funny if I see Steve and Tammy here?"  And indeed, they were there as well!  Great minds think alike.  Afterwards, I came back to the west side but drove straight to the math department to do some work.  Stephanie came to pick me up there so she could come visit me and park in my spot.  We talked for a bit, went to a mall to get dinner (since she needed to return something), and then came home and talked some more.  I'm surprised at how much we talked!  Now my throat hurts, and it is super late, and I am really tired.  Originally the plan was to spend like 4 hours together, but it turned into 7 hours.  Oh well—it's not like we'll do this any time soon again.  She dropped me off at school and I picked up my car and came back.  I'm going to sleep now.[Non Sequitur: Should Crematorium Heat Swimming Pool?] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-25 19:41:18 Clarifications 0 comments This Friday, I went to school to eat lunch with Sid—perhaps one last time before the term ends.  Indeed, this past three weeks homological algebra is cancelled due to scheduling.  I got a very cute reminder from Balmer today:Dear homological algebra students,Let me remind you that your favorite show resumes on Monday, with new two-hour episodes every Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 10:00 to 12:00, during two weeks.After class, Igor asked if I had time to talk a bit.  He clarified the questions (and the relations thereof) he mumbled on Wednesday.  I have three more questions to consider.  In the evening he sent me 5 more papers, though they might not be useful and in that case I should not read them (he said).  Anyway, research is progressing well, and despite having a lot of work, I'm enjoying school quite a bit.[Non Sequitur: Young Grandparents] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-24 20:51:03 Another Day 0 comments This Thursday, I woke up before 6, despite sleeping fairly late last night.  I don't really know what's up with my sleeping schedule these last few weeks.  It drifts to fairly late and fairly early, but in the morning I still wake up around 6 each day.  I went and bought some groceries, had breakfast, and did some work.  I cooked lunch today, and it was delicious.  Then I went to school attended seminars.  In between them, I read a paper which gives an efficient algorithm for tiling simply-connected regions using very specific set of tiles.  I came home around 7, had some fruits for dinner, and relaxed.Last 7 days I slept at 9, 10, and 11 with multiplicities 2, 2, and 3, respectively. Woke up at 5, 6, and 7 with multiplicities 1, 5, and 1, respectively. How come?  I don't know why I don't feel tired at night, and naturally wake up much more concentrated than my sleeping distribution.  Also, obviously at least 2 days I slept less than 8 hours.  Hmm... very weird.[Non Sequitur: Anagram Poetry] htam@76.173.184.*2011-02-23 19:45:47 Go Beavers 0 comments This Wednesday, I woke up to a lot of Facebook status updates congratulating the Caltech Beavers.  Apparently Caltech basketball won their first conference game in 26 years, after a 310-game losing streak.  The win was 46-45 over Oxy.I finished reading the fourth paper and decided to not read Bodini's paper.  I had leftover food for lunch, and then went to school for class and meeting with Igor.  Afterwards, I printed out some more papers, and then was going to head home.  But I bumped into Athipat, Josh, and Josh.  We talked for over an hour!  At first it was random chatting but then it "degenerated" into talking about our research.  After I was done, since it was rather late, I grabbed dinner at school (a little salad) and then came home.Supposedly my car would have been ready by yesterday but "worst-case" today.  I called them to confirm, but now they are saying they found something else so they will try to get it done by Fri, but "cannot guarantee anything."  Really?  Last week they said they would have it ready last Friday, and earlier even two weeks ago.  This is 5 weeks of repairs—and originally the estimate was 3 weeks.  Oh well, it's not like it makes a huge difference to me now that I am borrowing a car as opposed to renting one.  Thanks Alan![Non Sequitur: Swedish Architecture Firm Proposes Buildings on Rails]