It is our last day
It feels very bittersweet
We had a mobile demo of our dance experiment for people to try out. One guy came and he was killing it! I felt privileged to see this stranger belly dance.
Overall, the REU Symposium was cool! It was fun and intellectually stimulating to meet the other students and learn about their research. I wish we were able to socialize with those students throughout the program, but hey, at least we got a word in at the end!
I ate about 1/2 of a 1/2 of a 1/2 of the World’s Hottest Chocolate Bar during the ice cream social today. Also, the ice cream social was a really good idea. I might have to run one of these at the SDSU VR Club! Anyway, that chocolate warmed the back of my throat. It felt pleasant. Nina and Syema looked like they were dying (don’t worry, we’re all okay!). Birdie enjoyed the chocolate haha.
We’re almost done with our paper!
Can’t wait for the symposium tomorrow.
Let me give a brief summary of what happened since the last time I blogged:
VR Stress team finished their data collection and experiments. On Sunday, we came in to the CAR lab with our mentor to clean up some autonomic data (mostly heart rate and RSA). The next day, Alissa (another REU student in another program) ran our immunoassay. With that done, the step was to have Neil run statistical analyses (did repeated ANOVA using SPSS, I think I got that right).
Results look interesting. We’ll have to talk about it further with Birdie today. Oh boy, can’t wait for today’s Luncheon Lecture 😀
I learned a new word from Vrinda today hehe.
Also, shout out to Jack for looking over my resume! I gotta fine tune the content and fix the formatting.
Let’s see… I spent some time going through our “References” section of the paper. At the moment, I think one thing I could be doing is working on the conclusion section of our paper.
I will say though, the VR Stress team has been pretty good at splitting up the work evenly amongst ourselves. As a result, it was hard deciding the authorship order. Lucas and I were considering on flipping a coin haha. In the end, we decided it would go: Roselynn Conrady, Lucas Wright, Bradon Thymes, Ala Sobi, Neil Barnett, Lotte Van Dammen, and Elizabeth Shirtcliff.
Merry Christmas in July!
Peng Wei was our Luncheon Lecture guest and he was hilarious, and hecka smart. It’s also a small world because he knows one of the Aerospace Engineering professors at SDSU (Ping Lu!).
We finished data collection!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Things aren’t over for us though. We still have to analyze the results and write up the discussion.
Yesterday’s Luncheon Lecture featured Alex Braidwood. Super chill dude. I was amazed by how well-rounded he is. Not only is he a designer… he’s an artist, programmer, and engineer. His most interesting work is how he “visualizes” data via sound. Soundification, I think is how he described it.
I think my favorite takeaway was when he told us how he came to Iowa.
I came on accident but stayed on purpose– Alex Braidwood
There’s a lot that we can’t control in life. But it’s up to us to determine if we can take advantage of these opportunities to do something greater.
Yesterday was fun!
Thank you to Abby and Andrew for driving us to and from Minnesota.
I enjoyed getting to know the REU’s and students at the University of Minnesota.
Afterwards, we went to Raising Cane’s… Yum. Then, we skiddaddle to the Mall of America, where I met my childhood idol.
All in all, it was a solid day.
Regarding today though, the VR Stress team will have their weekly lab meeting today. We’ll discuss about the experiment and our number of participants with Birdie. We might have to make do with the amount of participants we currently have.
For about the past 3 weeks (including weekends), the VR Stress team has been staying until 7:30-8:30pm at VRAC to run experiments.
So far, we are halfway done. We have run 10 participants, and we need about 10 more (ideally) to get a total of 20 participants. Supposedly, we could get away with 18 participants too but… ideally we want 20 for a large sample size.
At the moment, we’ve been chipping away at the poster, research paper, and presentation for Minnesota. We’re at a point where we’re just waiting for the experiments to be done so we can finally have some results.
But that doesn’t mean that we don’t have any work to do. Neil assigned us a book and journal articles to read from. Further, we have to finish up the last chapter of Behave for our SPIT lab meeting.
The end is in sight.
NO TUMORS. NO CANCER. NO INFECTION. I’M OKAY 😀
Oh man, what a week haha.
Thank you to Abby and Eliot for taking care of me!
I felt a nostalgia rush upon entering VRAC this morning. The warmth and mugginess felt like a heavy blanket. It felt like home. (I have no A/C in my house haha)
For the Luncheon Lecture, I enjoyed talking to Dr. Danielson today. His approach to improving education systems is quite interesting. The biggest takeaway, for me, was that lecture capture isn’t always helpful because it depends on the course subject. For example, lecture capture is a fantastic supplemental tool for courses that require more memorization (like anatomy) but not so much for courses that involve more problem-solving (like chemistry).
In the course of our conversation, I asked him about his academic history (what was his major). He said something along the lines of:
“For my undergrad, I majored in English and I minored in Film Studies. I wanted to screenwrite. But the lifestyle I wanted versus my goals… They were different and I had to change paths.”
I appreciated that. I’m still in the process of figuring out a lot of things in my professional life. Originally, I wanted to pursue the more traditional mechanical engineering route of graduating and going straight to industry (most likely working on CAD or HVAC/R systems).
But upon coming here, I realize that I want to chase after innovative research (especially in regards to virtual reality). Also, I realize that I strongly dislike the Midwestern weather (no offense y’all). But… the stuff I want to work on is here… so I’m definitely going to have to compromise between geography and work goals.
I spent the majority of this morning making health-related phone calls to California. Oh side tangent: As i type, I’m currently
mildly very terrified to go outside because it suddenly got dark (from the clouds) and the wind is practically howling*. But I am oh so determined to get back to VRAC though (after the storm passes)!
Back to this morning, I realized 2 things:
- The majority of these phone calls were just me being on hold. Not necessarily the fault of the person on the other end of the line. Also, it boggled my mind to find out that the next available appointments for my stuff is like… September! Holy moly, I think I understand why people say we need to fix our healthcare system (but we can save this debate for another time).
- Health comes first. I’ve been putting off doctor appointments/check ups for a while… and I think that’s a big reason to why I’ve had to go to urgent care and what not. I’m the kind of person who puts work first, but really, it should be my health. Because after all, I can’t do work if I’m not healthy enough for it. Another reason why I think I’ve been having these issues is because I’ve been ignoring it, to be quite honest. Well, more like, I’ve been seeing these problems but thinking, “Ah it’s not a big deal, it’ll be okay.” But that’s a totally wrong mindset for this. When it doubt, get it checked out if you can.**
*As of 11:01, it is pouring super hard!
**As of 11:05, I hear thunder 😀
VR Stress team still doesn’t have their results yet. We’re still in the process of collecting data, which takes a lot of time.
Talked about this with Neil and he said that we’ll show proto data. In other words, our preliminary results and conclusion. But! We’ll mention that we’ll continue to revise our stuff once we collect more data.
I’m feeling optimistic though.
Anyway, I’m doing good. I spent the morning at urgent care, and I turned out alright. Not trying to jinx it!
VR Stress team has a solid abstract. I’ll have to ask the team if they filled out the form to submit to the REU Symposium.
Also, I need to submit my discussion questions about the book.
Edit: My team is great! They submitted the application 😀
Thus far, I’ve been using a spreadsheet to keep track of all my papers/references… then I dipped my toes into the Mendeley pool.
… It’s been great. I’ll still double check my citations just in case, but boy oh boy, Mendeley makes it so much easier.
Anyway, the VR Stress team paper has been coming along. The introduction is almost done. We’re going to have to work on the abstract so we can apply for the REU Symposium.
*Mendeley did not sponsor me in any way
VR Stress team is collecting some solid data. I would like to continue working on this research after the SPIRE EIT program is over. I’ll have to let Birdie know.
MCA (Major Course Activity) Presentations went well. Loved what everyone worked on. Thanks for the mentors and faculty for coming/helping us!
Special thanks 3D printing mentors: Alex Renner and Kate (Kexin) Wang! 😀
Last night, Emmanuelle, Lara, Jennifer, Nina, Kelsey, and I went to the laundromat with Abby. I brought my books and stuff just in case so I would have something to do while waiting… but time flew! I learned a lot about grad school through our conversations.
Makes me realize that I really need to start narrowing down what I want to do after undergrad. It’s so hard to choose! O_O
Lucas, Bradon, and I were running back from Mackay Hall (Birdie had us meet in there) because we were late… only to walk in on Jack telling us that the MCA presentations got moved to Thursday D: Aw well, we got some good aerobic exercise. Although, I’m a little bummed because we were in the middle of participating in an experiment but it’s all goodie in the hoodie.
Last night, I found out that my keycard to get into the apartment doesn’t work. Fortunately, I was going home with Nina so she was able to let me in 🙂
This morning before coming to VRAC, I stopped by the community office to resolve the issue. So at the moment, I have a temporary keycard (that works!). But the office lady said since I’m with a group, my keycard (the one that I got the first time upon coming to Iowa) is different… something along those lines. She says she’ll email once the other keycard gets fixed.
I hope that Jamiahus’s thesis defense went well! I’m also thankful for the donuts he brought for everyone, the chocolate cake donut was yummy 🙂
Thesis defenses are scary… but he was handling it like a champ. If I go down the grad school route, I want to be calm and collected like he was.
Not trying to jinx it, but as I type this: we’re going to try and run our 1st legitimate participant (as in, we’ll collect actual biomarker data)
You’re all nice and beautiful people! I just realized that we never exchanged our names or anything… but it was fun talking to all 3 of you!
So sorry that we had to end our conversation on the bus so abruptly ): Nevertheless, in the unlikely event that any of you can see this:
I wish you all the best of luck with your studies and I’m sure that you will make for amazing English teachers. I’d love to meet you all again some day. I feel compelled to visit Brazil! Obrigado 😀
I wish there were more of these classes in the engineering program at my school. Ethics really makes you think. I also believe it is important that we have these difficult discussions. We have to be able to deal with the consequences and effects of our innovations and technologies.
I don’t have an HBO subscription, but I’m totally down for a watch party to watch that Theranos documentary.
Oh also, this class inspired to read up on the news/politics some more.
I’m still a little lost on how GenderMag works. Can’t wait to discuss this more in depth tomorrow.
As for discussion… When Dr. Burnett was on the part of, “talking about gender without talking about gender,” I thought that was kind of interesting. From my understanding, she takes these more “feminine” traits and makes them more… gender-neutral. Some examples she used was “risk-aversion” and “tech learning style.”
I wonder if there are other ways to take away the gender from traits, and just make them human traits… I think that’s what I’m trying to get at.
Tested stress project
Sound is not working so well
But the text looks good
VR Stress team will start running their pilot participants this week (hopefully). Lucas will refine the Unity project by fixing the text (both text 1 and text 2). Another thing we need to do with the project is to have only 1 teacher.
Bradon and I spent some time with Neil to work on the research paper in the afternoon. We learned a lot about how to write our introduction. Also, we’re going to collaborate with an LSAMP student, Ala Sobi, on the methods portion of the research paper.
Changing topics to the Deeper Dive, my high heel is ready to print. I uploaded my STL and SolidWorks parts to our Google Drive. Alex is going to get me some hardware (just hex bolts and nuts). Looking forward to it!
On another note, can’t believe there’s about a month left. I’ve grown and learned so much these past weeks… It’s been bumpy, but in a good way! I like the variety, and I’m thankful to have these opportunities with everyone here.