Friday, July 30, 2010

Eighteenth Day

I had to download new Radio Images of the galaxies, this time from a different server then before. These ones were of much higher definition and showed greater detail of the radio lobes, center and even, in some, the jet. Later on in the day I started on the program but did not get close to finish. I left about an hour early - 4:30 - so I wouldnt go over 80 hours in the past two weeks.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Seventeenth Day

I believe today roughly marked the mid-way point in this internship. Today I finished downloading the needed Radio and DSS images for Mark by lunch time. After lunch, I went to Building 75 with Mark to listen to a talk pertaining to "Planetary Nebulae and Radio Galaxies" and the simulation of such celestial bodies. Although it was a little difficult to understand the speaker's foreign accent, I thought the portion on Planetary Nebulae was very interesting and the portion on Radio Galaxies was less so. After the talk I went back to the Insight Lab with a new assignment, write a program that will compile the images I have worked with into a format to place in Mark's publication. This might take a while.

Sixteenth Day

Just as I thought it was over, the data entry work multiplies. Which is good thing though, at least I understand how, what and why I am doing what I am doing. In the morning, after I shared my completed spreadsheet over the network to Mark, I recieved the task of gathering images from the HST database. I got to work at that project and only yielded about 4 succesful downloads out of the 49 galaxies attempted. Following that failure, we had our astronmer meeting when I told Mark about the problem and that the 11 galaxies that he really needed were not among the 4 successful downloads. He showed me a different way to download the images after the meeting, by accessing a different database. Also, I recieved the task of downloading Radio images of the galaxies. It was definately cool to look at these "Radio Galaxies" in the radio spectrum because they showed up in all sorts of interesting shapes and intensities. I did not get to downloading the 11 optical images that Mark needs and did not finish downloading all of the radio images, that will be tomorrow morning's work.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Fifthteenth Day

Had to check the spelling on that title. Today I went through the data I had collected from UV and IR images of the 49 galaxies and used it to calculate the flux of the said galaxies. Mark gave me the formulas to use and I entered them into my excel spreadsheet. This data can now be used by Mark to compare the flux of the galaxies at the different wavelengths in order to classify them and support his further research into the life cycles of radio galaxies. I'm continuing to read the astronomy textbook so I can further my understanding rather than rely on regurgitation of explanations given to me. As far as the Apprentice style competition went, Kevin won the $100 gift card grand prize. Throughout the day I would help a little bit with Fallon's efforts to win or at least lead Greg and Kevin astray. It was a fun experience and definately an interesting way to spur creative thinking in regards to the future of the SCUBE project.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Fourteenth Day

Jake told us yesterday that we would recieve our next challenge before 9 AM today. Staying true to his word we got an email at 8:59 AM which assigned our teams to make a budget spreadsheet and Budget Justification by 1 PM. As Chris was helping all sorts of people and Zach didn't come in, I decided to hold off on working on the challenge until after coffee and finish the photometry in the meantime. I did end up finish entering data into my spreadsheet from APT (Aperture Photometry Tool) and started to calculate the flux of each image. After coffee I worked on the budget for about an hour and handed it in at about 12:30. During the presentations of budgets, things got heated and my group and Amy and Nick were selected as the Top two groups. Out of the four of us, Nick and I we awarded a dinner courtesy of Jake. Out of the losing groups, Kevin was "eliminated." Our next challenge was sent after that meeting, we have to come up with three new ideas for the scube and present one of them at 9:30 AM on Monday. I have quite a bit of work this weekend as it is now down to 6 from 9.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thirteenth Day

Today I did not finish the Photometry as I had expected to. This was largely due to an interesting email from Jake. In it he asked us to form teams within the insight lab for an apprentice style competition in order to spur creative ideas concerning the SCUBE. I formed a team with Chris and Zach. We worked on a poster, as that was our first competition. We had trouble printing for the 4pm deadline due to a malfunction of the printer. We had it printed by 5pm when we presented it to the lab. Luckily we weren't eleminated. Tomorrow we recieve our next task.

Twelfth Day

I went through the day like all of the past five or so days until 11:30 when we headed out to go on a field trip to the University of Rochester's Biomedical Engineering and Optics center. The sub that I got right before actually going makes what I believe my sixth free lunch, continuing the trend of half free lunches. Out of the three labs we visited I was most interested in the last lab, where the undergraduate researcher was working on growing human cells in the shape of an organ. It just fascinated me to think that we may, one day, be able to grow an entire heart or another type of organ. When I got back to the Insight lab, I continued work on the photometry. I hope to have all of the data entered by the end of Fhursday and finish the various computations by the end of this week.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

eleventh day

This morning we recieved a sixteen character word to unscramble. I started the morning by trying to solve it and told the undergrads around me, who tried to help. Among the combinations my peers and I got were, "Pirate-ship-runner," "R U Happier Interns" and a long list of phrases and words that had remainders and made no sense. I gave up after a while with the hope to solve it during lunch and started back up with the photometry. During coffee, Ory told me he heard the word was "Intraprenuership". An intraprenuer a person with initiative and an industrious nature, like that of an Entraprenuer, only acting within a company. Honestly, most people should be Intraprenuers in whatever company they work. They should strive for excellence and the most efficient operation of their employer's company. The survival of their employer's company is the surviaval of their employment. On that note, I continued to work on the photometry and went to a 3:30 progress meeting with all of the astronomy research team. Tomorrow we have a field trip to the U of R and a Volleyball game, which I might play in if I get far enough with my work.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Tenth Day

As expected, the use of two screens allowed me to operate at twice the speed I was operating at last week. Today I finished the photometry on ten galaxies, as opposed to the daily average last week of around five per day. At this rate I should be done by the end of the week, easily. My eyes have started to hurt more often from looking at a computer screen for just about all day. Breaks in the day, like coffee and lunch, make it a lot easier to get through. I am excited to finish this photometry and see what there is to do next.

Edit: I just realized that I clicked "Save Now" and not "Publish Post," so here it is one day late.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Ninth Day

Friday was pretty much a carbon copy of Thursday. I continued working on the photometry project which is about one-third complete. Tyler treated about eight of us in the lab to lunch but still had plenty of money left over. Toward the end of the day, when my eyes started to feel strained from staring at the mini-laptop all week, Chris and I set up a large screen monitor to run off of the laptop. I have it hooked up as two seperate monitors so I can have my excell spreadsheet on one and the photometry program on the other. It should help to speed up the photometry data transfer that I will continue to work on next week. I can't believe that we are done with week two already and that there are only five more weeks left.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Eighth Day

Once again, my day was filled with the wonderful world of photometry. I am still picking away at the large number of galaxies ahead of me. The work is monotonous and tedious, leading to a very slow process of data collection and transfer, but it is not terrible considering I am getting paid. At lunch time Tyler treated about five of us in the lab to a lunch at crossroads as he has a great sum of money left on his meal plan and is done tomorrow. It was great food and come to think of it, it was the fourth free lunch I have recieved in the past eight days of work. I like that statistic. Well, tomorrow is going to be filled with more photometry so I need to get to sleep soon so I am not cross-eyed while looking at the small computer screen.

Seventh Day

We got to sleep in a little bit this morning as we needed to report by 9:15 for our field trip to JML. I thought the tour of JML was awesome. I love just looking machines and figuring out their mechanics, and seeing so many machines, from the 1930s to now, just fascinated me. I loved watching the machinists making the lenses with such care and expertise. After the tour we went out to lunch, which was good, and headed back to RIT. When I got back at around 12:45, I started in with the Photometry and kept working at that until 5:15. I even skipped the volleyball because I wanted to continue with my work as Mark is relying on me, a little bit, to finish.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Sixth Day

Wasn't that a bad Arnold movie? Ba dum dum spsh. . . Today was dominated by working on my project as specified by Mark yesterday. I continued recording the photometry of a number of different galaxies. It will be a long time before I finish all of the 50 or so galaxies ahead of me, so I am not going to participate in the volleyball game tomorrow. By the end of today, my eyes hurt from working on the computer all day. Although the work is monotonous and at some points downright boring, I find myself awed at what the images show. Some of the galaxies are something like 1600 light years away and the sizes of these objects are mind blowing. Well, off to bed as we have a busy day tomorrow with our field trip.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Fifth Day

I woke up slightly later than usual- by half and hour - so I was worried about getting to work on time as I am usually here with about ten minutes to spare. However, there were no delays on 590 and I made good time, making it here for the 8:45 meeting with minutes to spare. When I reported to the Insight Lab following the meeting, I remembered that Jake was out of town. I sent him an email with my choice of project, processing images of x-shaped, double-double, GPS and CSS galaxies, and got to work on the IDL user guides. After a while, Jake responded with an order to meet with Mark for and assignment pertaining to my project. At that point, I could not find Mark, so I continued working on IDL until about 1 pm. I meet with Mark at 1 and recieved instructions for processing images of some 50 galaxies. It is going to be a lot of work to go through all of them as it took me 1 hour to go through the first galaxy. Since Jake is out of town, there is no 5 pm meeting so I am now going to leave.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Fourth Day

Once again, I devoted a large portion of my time today to learning IDL. I have reached the point in my study of this language that I can write a simple program. It is a small program, that accomplishes little, but the important thing I my increase in understanding of IDL. Today I was presented a number of possible projects for this summer, my final decision must be made by Monday. All four choices sounded very interesting and sound like they would push me to my limit of understanding, unless that was the effect of the pedantic language used by the Astronomers. I will have to put a lot of thought into this final decision, something to do after reading chapter 1 of Jake's thesis paper on AGN.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Third Day

Today was devoted to learning and familiarizing myself with the IDL programming language. For about the first two hours I was shooting in the dark with the foreign nature of the language. The only other times I've used any type of programming language was html in 8th grade technology class and writing a program in Visual BASIC on my own. Both were small scale projects and neither languages are as sophisticated as IDL seems to be. Throughout the day, it became easier for me to understand the operation of IDL aswell as the help files themselves. I look forward to the challenge of learning IDL and applying it to whatever research I am attached to. At about 3:30 we had a meeting to get access to a group file, which lasted to 5 when we had our daily debrief. I left at about 5:15 from the building. Tomorrow I am pretty sure all of us Astronomical Imaging interns recieve our assignments for the summer, so I'm pretty excited.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Second Day

Well, today was basically a day devoted to setting up the various accounts needed for the internship and being introduced to the subject matter. These accounts included another email, a wiki page and a base camp. I also set my password and met with Mr. Smialek to get my University ID. After that I researched Active Galactic Nuclei and wrote a small paper about it. Today was not too busy overall. We are now off to meet with Jake for our first 5 o'clock meeting this summer, then home.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

First Day

Well, today was the first day at the RIT Imaging Science Internship. We started the day at our 8:45 meeting where we split into three groups. From there we went on a scavenger hunt around campus, resulting in a lot of misdirection and walking. After the hunt we had lunch and started to work on the movie. About one hour into the work, our computer froze. It was a Mac. We resorted to just showing the unedited video at our afternoon meeting, which showed the amounts of misdirection and walking we had that morning. It took forever to go through each video that way. I left early as Dr. Noel-Storr was not present in his office when we went to meet with him. Over all it was a fun day with minor frustrations - Mac computers - but a great start to what will hopefully become a great summer job.