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Search - "phd"
Training the beast!
Hopefully I will submit my paper soon, and then I can share a video of the beast in action :)41
So the new robot (Dingo) arrived yesterday. Today I did the unboxing, and damn was it disappointing. I realized the university purchased it not from the company I recommended, and they messed up the delivery.
The robot controller was missing, and the charging cable did not match the charging station input. Like dude, you had one job!
Since the lady in administration decided to disregard my recommendation and order from a random shop, she might as well assemble the robot herself....15
So my localization algorithm actually runs onboard my YouBot :)
My paper was basically torn apart by my professor, so I had to write some new classes and redo the whole experimental section. And all the other sections too. I resubmitted it to him after revisions, and the second iteration was way better - I'm really close to final paper level :)
I told my professor and postdoc that I will appreciate more support and positive feedback, because so far our communication was only very dry criticism. For me it's really devastating, because feeling like I constantly disappoint people just kills me on the inside.
It seems like they took it to heart, they have been nicer to me in the last few days :)6
We got the report made by the EU committee that is assigned to evaluate our project (robotics in the service of healthcare).
I was full on trashing the reviewers for writing some seriously dumb shit, and low-key dissing my professor. Until I got to the part where they addressed the work package I was responsible for. They referred to my work as impressive and innovative, and I was like, well, maybe they're not that bad 😂10
PhD application saga:
So, the recommenders showed up. And one by one, the letters are rolling in. I am a little hopeful.
And also anxious since there's a mere 4% acceptance rate.
But now, we shall wait...
*Goes into hiding to anxiously binge-eat*17
My advisor thought that my MCL algorithm behaves a bit strange, so he wanted me to investigate it. I said I'd be happy to review the code because I anyway considered refactoring, and asked if I can have another pair of eyes to help me.
A more senior PhD student was assigned to help me, and by the suggestion of my advisor we tested my code against a very well-written and well-performing implementation of MCL. This implementation was written by another professor, who is a close friend of my advisor and the actual supervisor of the student assigned to help.
But this implementation was optimized for a very specific type of maps, and on the maps I worked on it just failed consistently. The student, in a misguided attempt to protect the pride of his advisor and subsequently his, wasted days adding code and fine-tuning the implementation.
In the meantime, my MCL has a stable configuration that converges on both types of maps. It behaves differently, but the outcome is about the same as the other implementation.
I am a little sick of wasting my time (week+) on someone else's attempt to reassure their ego, so I'm doing my planned research work on the weekend...1
The newest addition to our lab - Pikachu!
We managed to overcome the weirdest pinout configuration ever on the MCU and power up the Nvidia Jetson.
Next week I'm going to make a clean install of the Jetson because there is some funky garbage there, and then I'll try to drive the little beast :)18
As 22.2.22 is coming to an end, I've sent an email to request for another PhD position.
Wish me luck.9
Now realizing the whole "Fuck this shit, I'm gonna become a barista" was literally a midlife crisis.
Now, how do I find my way back to a brand new PhD application? Or a research job... Or a dev job... Honestly, I'd take whatever.
Side note, after weeks of being on my feet and working 6-8 hours a day, I have lost exactly zero kilos. This was a very bad idea. 🤦
So, I'm not the smartest, but at least now I have had two careers. How many of you can say that you've had two different careers in your life, eh?11
I just got a company called me for interview for f**king 3 hours, I wasted 3 hours of them asking me stupid questions. I show them the projects I have done, as they demand. I spent another 1.5 hours of them questioning my intelligence of whether these projects are stolen , fraud, or copied from Youtube. Just because I am a self-taught and have multiple professional certs, they believed these are mine if I have a bachelor degree or a PHD in Computer science.10
Sometimes I wish I was driven by positive reasons, and not by self-loathing and sense of worthlessness. I didn't have an actual vacation for over 3 years.
I am now in Thailand with my parents, and I am working my ass off to meet IROS/RAL deadline instead of chilling. The urge to continue working is really compulsive. I am very tired.
On a brighter note, the early experiments I ran look promising9
So, I'm trying to process the feelings from not getting accepted for the PhD project I applied for a while back. And it's just unfair. They've recruited people with no publication and less GPA than me. I also doubt any of them would be field-wise more relevant than me tbh. (Wouldn't be surprised if they hired MBA grads) I have all the relevant qualifications that even people working on that project do not have. I could easily get this project going beyond what they are doing with it rn. It's unfair. But it's life. And life goes on.
Am I angry? Yes. Am I disappointed, also yes. They didn't give me any alternative offers either. So I am going to steal the project and finish it so they have to throw all the money they've invested in the toilet.
... If only I wasn't depressed and could bring myself to apply elsewhere again. 🙄12
My professor asked for some images of cool stuff I worked on for a presentation he is giving. So here is me moving fast enough to cause motion blur :) The code is using the camera to detect people, and then project the bounding box down in the lidar frame, and mask all the lidar points within that cone.
Anyway, if someone is familiar with super fast agglomerative clustering code in C++ (or even python, if it's efficient), please share it with me!7
Some years ago i attended to a summer school abroad. I instantly built a connecection with this one girl, we spend the whole week together, talking, sharing humor, deep conversations etc. We also won the prize for the best project together. I guess it looked like the beginning of a love story for the rest of the course. For me it didn't exactly, actually I didn't had much romantic feelings for her; she was the arrogant, manipulative type I thought I could handle a friend but never as girl friend. We shared some darkness so to say. But I really hoped for a new close friendship. Since she had a boyfriend back home i thought she most likely wanted just the same. Anyway I was a bit worried she might want more because she made me quite a lot of compliments and told me how she liked me.
And yes, she wanted more: Whenever we talked on the phone after the summer school or met (she lived in a city not far away from mine by coincidence) she begged me for help with coding. She had a well paid as extremely interesting PHD position with a topic between political science and computer science. Besides classical humanities methods her topic would require a lot of coding though. But she had zero, absolutely zero clue of programming, and, as it turned out, zero interesst. I told her from the beginning she would have to learn quite a lot or pay someone to code for her. It was far too much to do as a favour by a friends or such. And, since it was part of her fucking PHD it would have been cheating somehow of she didn't do it herself. But instead, she kept texting me if I could 'help to fix some bugs', sending me unrelated code fragments she copied from SO and not even tried to understand. So I told her to fuck off at one point. After all it was not that we have been friends for decades; we only knew each other for a couple of months an spent only one week together. So thats it.
But I still think of it from time to time and it makes me angry because it feels like she was only nice to me because she thought i am this nerd guy who falls instantly in love to a charming good looking girl and does everything for her. I did neither at all but indeed wanted to be friends with her, thats bad enough. It even makes me more more angry that she actually has this awesome PHD project about politics in the fucking digital world and think of programmers like this. And that she will succeed without understanding anything bacause in the end there would have been a dude who did all the work for her I bet.8
I got the booster shot yesterday but I'm pretty sure they injected me some psychoactive drug. I had the weirdest dreams - I was have in-depth arguments with my post-doc about complexity and deep learning, and I came up with 3 different directions for my research. Also my mom was singing Despacito in the background.
My arm is dead and I can't even connect cables on my beloved robot :(7
The applications have closed and yours truly shall await the results, which could come anytime in January or February.
And so I wait. I hate this limbo since there is nothing for me to do to impact the outcome. What's worse is that I am absolutely unmotivated to do anything else. Since this project is literally my dream, and despite how I'm trying to mentally prepare myself in case I don't get in, there's just something in my brain that goes like "nah. I just want this shiney thing. Just this and nothing else". So I don't even know what to do with myself.
At the institute I did my PhD everyone had to take some role apart from research to keep the infrastructure running. My part was admin for the Linux workstations and supporting the admin of the calculation cluster we had (about 11 machines with 8 cores each... hot shit at the time).
At some point the university had some euros of budget left that had to be spent so the institute decided to buy a shiny new NAS system for the cluster.
I wasn't really involved with the stuff, I was just the replacement admin so everything was handled by the main admin.
A few months on and the cluster starts behaving ... weird. Huge CPU loads, lots of network traffic. No one really knows what's going on. At some point I discover a process on one of the compute nodes that apparently receives commands from an IRC server in the UK... OK code red, we've been hacked.
First thing we needed to find out was how they had broken in, so we looked at the logs of the compute nodes. There was nothing obvious, but the fact that each compute node had its own public IP address and was reachable from all over the world certainly didn't help.
A few hours of poking around not really knowing what I'm looking for, I resort to a TCPDUMP to find whether there is any actor on the network that I might have overlooked. And indeed I found an IP adress that I couldn't match with any of the machines.
Long story short: It was the new NAS box. Our main admin didn't care about the new box, because it was set up by an external company. The guy from the external company didn't care, because he thought he was working on a compute cluster that is sealed off behind some uber-restrictive firewall.
So our shiny new NAS system, filled to the brink with confidential research data, (and also as it turns out a lot of login credentials) was sitting there with its quaint little default config and a DHCP-assigned public IP adress, waiting for the next best rookie hacker to try U:admin/P:admin to take it over.
Looking back this could have gotten a lot worse and we were extremely lucky that these guys either didn't know what they had there or didn't care.
PhD saga update.
Been keeping up with other candidates, and seems some have gotten their acceptance offers. I haven't. I'm losing hope. Sad. Very sad. 😞
Tachycardia is not fun, and I did not sign up for it. But apparently this ^ saddens me more than it should.7
I have been working on this software for 3 years now. The code base was a working prototype made by my boss before I came, not more, not less. Php + Angular. Have been refactoring a lot, backend is backed with hundreds of tests now, frontend still lacks a lot. Still a lot of programm structures are still the same weird ones my boss once created in a rush between two meetings while learning Angular to get the prototype finished. Now it's used in production which makes hard to refactor, because we have to maintain backwards compatibility. Neither the parts I added or refactored completely are satisfying, because they are built on this structures, because i never got any feedback for anything I decided and because I changed my own paradigms over time.
So I am all alone on this project. All genuinly new projects are assigned to the new team members (i was the first one, no we are five plus my boss) because I wont have time, have to maintain the old one. So I never can do something new which is quite frustrating.
I did a little side tool, the only thing I invented and did completely by myself in our repertoire - and now some stakeholder shows big interest onto this. Instead of giving me the task to make a real project from this my boss wants to give it to them to develop it. Why? Because I need more time for the main application.
Also the more the software is used the more bug tickets and feature requests come. I was crying for help for months but the others had appareantly more important stuff to do.
This might be true to some extend. Yesterday we had some kind of crisis meeting and my boss wanted again to assing pur junior to help me, who has a shit load of other things to do and is a student. I insisted that this would not be enough, and one of the fulltime devs has to get involved because the thing is our core application and I am only part time btw. So my boss said we wont decide today but one of them should do it. They should have some time to figure out who which is understandable but it's not that I didn't keep saying this for months. Now they are all like whimp whimp when I have to do php i will quit. The new projects are all typescript, with node backend if any. But alas, one of them even said yesterday he doesn't want to do js anymore. Okay... but... this is our tech stack then get another job allready?
And I should do the same probably. But then again I feel very sorry for my boss who helped me in very dark times of corona and more. If both of us leave, the project he worked on for decade (including convincing poeole, collect money..) might be suddenly at it's end while he is so exited about it's access today...
I also get insecure if it's really that they hate php so much or that they don't want to work with me personally because maybe I am a bad team Player or what?
I experienced the same at my old workplace, got left alone with big parts of the project because they didn't want to do php and js in this case and it ended up five devs doing the python backend and me doing the frontend and the php cms part all alone. Then I quit and now everything seems to happen again.
And then again I think I am only fucked up so hard by this stuff because I do not really like being a developer at all. I only do it for the money and because I am good at it (at least i think so. Nobody ever bothers to ever to read my code and give me feedback, because you know, php and js). So I guess I would hate any other job in the field maybe likewise?
This job *is* convinient, salary, office
position, flexibility could not be better. At the end of the day it's not that stressfull. And i don't have any second of freetime (due to family) or energy i could offer a new and more demanding employer, can't work over time or even take a fulltime position, can't home office, can't earn less, can't travel very long to the office and especially can't go back to school to learn something completely new. Some of these constraints are softwe then other naturally but still my posibilities at the Moment are very limited. That might change in about five years if the family situation changed. So it would most likely be reasonable to stay until then at my current job? And bear being alone with this app, don't getting involved on any new project, don't learn anything new, don't invent anything.
There was one potential way out, they considered offering me PHD position to the upcoming ml part of the project... But I learned that I would attend to a bunch of classes at university first, which i would like to, but I don't think i have the time.
I feel trapped somehow. I also feel very lonely in the Office because those fucktards keep saying in home office.
Man, I don't want to go to work today.6
There are two weeks left until the PhD application results are published. But I'm having such awful nervous breakdowns. I don't even know, if it's anxiety or if I'm literally dying inside from something else. From an almost-heart-attack today when I got a trivial and unrelated bad-news email, to keep having weird dreams about things like end of the world and post-apocalyptic life, or being jumpy all the time.
... And it's not like it's life or death, I know that. I know that I can do other things if this doesn't stick. I know things will workout the way they should; I know all of those. But there's just something destroying my physical and mental health right now, and I don't even know if it's just the anxiety for the next big step in my career, or something else, or how I should deal with it.
... Anyways, amannoyed.7