Friday, November 26, 2004

Palmy Week Two.

Not much has changed from last work getting todo alot more lapwork. Apart from work still not alot to do. I still need to try organising some sort of interent connection in my flat as the current system's annoying and fonterra still hasn't given us network access yet. Though hopefully that will change seeing we're supposed to be getting work laptops next week.

Can't really think of much else to say except have meet a few of the Palmy TSCF people which is good.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Palmy One week down!

Well I've now spent a week in Palmy 5 days of which were spent “working” at Fonterra's research facility. In that time I'm come too a couple of conclusions, Fonterra would be a cool place to work full time at and there's not a lot to do in Palmy during the weekends if you don't know people.

Any way back to Fonterra. As suggested above working there is quite fun (at least this far) it's had some boring parts especially this week with all the confusion with all the summer students showing up and the national Microbiology conference being held in the town. Which meant my supervisor was for the last two days dashing off to that for most of the day. Still on the Thursday I did get to do some lab work total DNA extraction is quite fun (well as fun as work can be at least) not a very hard technique and one that I'd already done in Molecular genetics at University but still none the less interesting. Friday made up for that though with the supervisor in town for most of the day and the DNA extraction complete it was decided to wait till next week to do the analysis the result being I spent the day reading research papers, not the most fun thing to do as any of you Science students will know. Still it did mean that I've completed most of the background reading for the research.
Well I guess I should comment on the first couple of days. Monday was the big “First” day. After some difficulties with the bike I borrowed I managed to get to Fonterra at 9am were I met up with Chris (A guy from my Biochem classes) who's also doing work at Fonterra over the summer. Wandered into the building got fitted out with visitors passes by the Receptionist then waited for the HR person to arrive and take us to a conference room where the health and safety lady was explaining all the OSH stuff to all the students who had arrived sat through that then went down to the cafeteria for morning tea. After which the HR person went over various other things of importance gave us our staff passes (Cool little radio frequency things just hold the card somewhere near the sensors on the doors and they unlock for you!) then took us to our various supervisors. Then Lunch time at the Staff Cafeteria (foods real nice and quite cheap!) which was followed by a discussion with my supervisor (who's got several students) about the various projects were doing and how they kind of related to each other. Then afternoon tea at the staff Cafeteria. After that organised a few things got shown round the building introduced to people we would have to deal with, given some readings and done for the day. After which I headed up the road to the place I'm staying at ordered a pizza got my second cousins to drop off the rest of my luggage and went to bed.
Tuesday turn up to Fonterra 8:30 have a chat with the supervisor got told what was happening with pay and related things Morning tea, then went to a seminar by a visiting scientist (from Ireland) followed by a visit to stores for safety Glasses (cool somewhat stylish ones quite a wide range of choices) and a couple of lab coats. Seeing I wear glasses they also gave me the order form for a set of prescription safety glasses for me (~$300 worth paid for by them!). After which was lunch, did some reading in the library for a bit then had the the safety tour of the lab I'm working in, Afternoon tea more talking to the supervisor and done for the day.
Wednesday head in 8:30 another safety tour of another lab I might work in. Sub out some cultures Morning tea, Chat with supervisor do some reading, Lunch do something I can't remember then Afternoon tea and I finish for the day to head into town to order the prescription safety glasses from OPSM.

That's pretty much the week at work after work I've mainly been listening to music, doing some of the reading for work and playing the odd game on my laptop as I say not a lot to do in the evenings and weekends in Palmy.

Sunday, November 14, 2004


Well I've now been in Palm for 24 hours so about time to post about the happenings of the last week.

As my previous post has indicated I finished exams on the Monday (9th). With Biochemistry 3 being held on the Monday afternoon. It went fairly well so I'm pretty sure that I've done reasonably well and therefore should have my degree.

Next day Tuesday I spent the morning mucking around. Then went in to uni for a bit and chased the Bank for abit about a delay in clearing the laptop payment. The evening was spent watching a Movie at Brehauts with a few others.

Wednesday was spent doing not alot in the morning with the afternoon spent on updating the book sale tender (due this Friday). It would be good to get that again as the money helps pay for alot of Christian Union activities. The evening was spent at Andrew's playing settlers and Magic with Andrew, Jared, Matt P and Paul.

Thursday morning was exciting because the laptop arrived. However I was forced away from spending all day at that by mum taking me shopping to get some stuff for Palmy in the Morning which was followed up by chatting to the last two lecturers I wanted to talk to about Master Research for next year. After that a friend dropped by for a bit. Then I was off for a haircut then to Alethea's 21'st, which was a lot of fun. Got home lateish from that then played on the laptop for a bit.

Friday I packed for the Six weeks in Palmy (I get back the 24th December) we (Me and the rest of the Christian Union exec exc Tim) headed up to Blenheim they for SLC (Student Leaders Conference/Summer Love Camp :P) and me for Palmy. Spent the night at Ray's then at 4am Saturday Morning got up to head to Picton for the 5:30am ferry crossing to Wellington (not the best time to get up!).

Saturday after crossing over on the ferry very early that morning we took a shuttle to the Wellington Bus/Train Station where we (the exec) split up the others going to explore Wellington well I waited for the Bus that was to take me to Palmy and for some old friends from Napier to wander down and say hi. After they tuned up spent two hours wandering along the Wellington waterfront then headed back and caught the Bus up to Palmy. Where I got picked up by my Second cousins (my mothers cousins and his family). Spent the remainder of the day at there place fiddling around on the laptop.

Sunday went to Church with my cousins then after lunch biked into town to meet another Guy from my Biochemistry class who'd also got a job with Fonterra over the summer. Had a look around Palmy and the Massey Campus then headed back here. Which brings me upto the current time. Leaving me with the final alterations to the booksale tender to be made and some documents to fill out with regards to my accommodation. With my job at fonterra starting tomorrow morning.

Any way I hope things are going well back in Christchurch. Enjoy your selves people and I hope to see some of you over my Christmass break if your still in town during the two weeks after Christmass.

Monday, November 08, 2004


That is it the last of my three exams was finished today. All three went all right so I think I can say that is my undergraduate degree finished. One BSc (Biochemistry) done, of course I'll need to wait till the results to make sure of that though.

It also means things get busy I can no longer put off things with the excuse that I should be studying meaning I've now got a couple of weeks worth of stuff to do in three days.

First is stuff related to my summer job. For those of you that don't know I applied for a summer job with Fonterra (the big milk company) and got it so I'm off to Palmy Nth for 12 weeks :(. Not my favourite place in the world but I need the experience, so to bad.

Unfortunately that means I'm out of town for most of the holidays except for 2 weeks just after Christmas Seeing I leave Friday the 12th of November.
Which is bad as I miss out on all you wonderful people's company and all the fun and amazing activities that will be organised. So hopefully a few of you will be around between the 24th of December and the 7th of January which is my Christmas holiday period. So that I can say hi and see you all.

Any way what I'm doing at Fonterra roughly, will be looking at the life cycle of a Bacteriophage (A virus which infects some species of Microbes) which is of interest to Fonterra.

Stuff I need to arrange with regards to this is:
- Accommodation in Palmy (partially sorted).
- Getting up there I'll be heading up with the other members of the CU exec who are going to SLC (Student leaders conference aka Summer love camp).
- Organising stuff to keep me from going nuts with boredom during the weekends.
- Go shopping with mum to get some stuff I need.

After that I've also got stuff that needs to arranged for doing Masters next year:
- I need to decided on a rough project Idea for research.
- I need to decided on and get a lecturer to be my supervisor for Masters.
- I need to decided on my 4th 400 level (Masters) paper for next year.

Fun stuff is:
- Have my laptop arrive and load all the needed software and Music on it.
- Play lots of games on it.
- Organise a game of Settlers or three.
- Possibly organise a small LAN.
- Go to Alethea's 21st.

Finally I've Christian Union stuff to do seeing I'm on the exec:
- I need to sign some stuff for the hand over from the old exec.
- Discuss the UCSA Book sale tender with the rest of the exec and those in CU interested in helping out.
- Rewrite or get some one else to rewrite the tender for the Book sale, and have it done preferably before I leave for the Job on Friday.
- Talk to various other exec members about things we need to get done by the end of the holidays.
- Spend half a day or so with all the exec apart from Tim as some sort of team building/getting to know each other thingy.

Hmm I feel alot better after having written that all down doesn't seem so much after all, seeing I've got 3 days or if you prefer 72 hours in which to do most of it before I leave on Friday with the Rest of the exec for Wellington. After which I carry on to Palmy.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Worth a Laugh & a Read :-)

The “Moon”: A Ridiculous Liberal Myth — by 70%.

Other Good reads some what more geeky than the first ;).

The Tao of Programming.

Worth reading if you want to attempt to understand us geeks :-).
Though the book may be about programmers you could stick science and research in there as well and it would still be meaningfull. In fact you could probably add Music as well :P

A not so Randomly chosen example.

A manager went to his programmers and told them: ``As regards to your work hours: you are going to have to come in at nine in the morning and leave at five in the afternoon.'' At this, all of them became angry and several resigned on the spot.

So the manager said: ``All right, in that case you may set your own working hours, as long as you finish your projects on schedule.'' The programmers, now satisfied, began to come in at noon and work to the wee hours of the morning.

A randomly choosen example.

There once was a man who went to a computer trade show. Each day as he entered, the man told the guard at the door:

``I am a great thief, renowned for my feats of shoplifting. Be forewarned, for this trade show shall not escape unplundered.''

This speech disturbed the guard greatly, because there were millions of dollars of computer equipment inside, so he watched the man carefully. But the man merely wandered from booth to booth, humming quietly to himself.

When the man left, the guard took him aside and searched his clothes, but nothing was to be found.

On the next day of the trade show, the man returned and chided the guard saying: ``I escaped with a vast booty yesterday, but today will be even better.'' So the guard watched him ever more closely, but to no avail.

On the final day of the trade show, the guard could restrain his curiosity no longer. ``Sir Thief,'' he said, ``I am so perplexed, I cannot live in peace. Please enlighten me. What is it that you are stealing?''

The man smiled. ``I am stealing ideas,'' he said.

That should keep you busy for a bit.