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Nov 6, 2011 | The halfway point

It’s halfway into the first quarter of my last year at Stanford, and I feel as though I have kept these pages woefully uninformed of the personal things that accompany me every day. The blog started as a way for me to voice my thoughts in ways that would be interesting to reflect upon at a future point, and I want to make sure it remains that way without worrying about if I’m tooting my own horn too much.

This quarter has been remarkably good and full of pleasant surprises. It felt as though I had started on the wrong foot, what with missing out on training for being a Teaching Assistant in the Introduction to Human Computer Interaction class (I was in Vermont) and having to deal with the consequences of reshuffling my credits in order to ensure that I could graduate on time. It’s easy to feel as though the world is going to collapse when the cards you’ve stacked so carefully come tumbling down with an obstacle, but I’ve learned that after some time has past it becomes easier to realize how much one can blow things out of proportion.

Being a TA is an amazingly rewarding experience. I’ve always felt that teaching is something I enjoy and relish, though it can be a hugely exhausting affair. It’s one of those things that are easy to get wrapped up in, only to realize that a whole day has gone by with nothing more to it than a host of people-to-people interactions, meetings, conversations, encouragements and remarks. But my focus this quarter has been to make sure I don’t compromise those people-interactions in favor of work or school, which I have so often done previously. Alongside Joel Brandt I’ve had the privilege of teaching several lab sections covering core technologies such as PHP and JavaScript, which I hope will help me with an arsenal of cool resources for people to refer to in the future, even beyond the class.

Research has also been amazingly fulfilling. I’m working with Jeff Heer, who taught two of my classes last year (Data Visualization and the HCI Studio) and who is an amazing professor all around. Each professor has their own interests and passions, and it’s always neat to be able to see those passions manifested in the material and research they do. My work is related to imagining how the future of TV will look like, and the open-ended nature of that question really lets me explore wild ideas, a la IDEO.

We shall see how the rest of the quarter pans out, but I’m just looking forward to chugging along at this pace and seeing where things go. The future is really scary at this point, so I guess I’m just going to be happy with what I have for now.

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 6th, 2011 at 2:13 am, EST under the category of Future Me. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.