Week 2


This week, Justine and Igor brought cake to the ArticuLab. I typed up the data structure, learned some cool Java tricks, and spent over an hour debugging to find that I'd accidentally written a 1 instead of an i.

Things I Learned

  • how to be friends with enum types
  • elephants pass the mirror test
  • why makefiles are cool
  • movie tickets in the U.S. are cheap compared to other countries (except India)
  • there is a huge closet across from the entrance of the ArticuLab that I didn't notice all last week
  • IntelliJ is actually pretty intelligent


I started off by constructing the (previously discussed) data structure in Java, via command line via Terminal via MacBook Pro. Afterwards, Timo advocated for IDEs and Gradle for a bit (and helped me set that up). He also shuffled around my code to improve functionality, which was quite interesting (and informative) to watch--I later finished the shuffling, then adapted the whole thing to work for multiple phone conversations at the same time. And after getting all that in shape, I moved more stuff around so my code could spit out nice(r) looking statistics instead of a mess of numbers (yay for organization).

Borrowing Wheels

Something that's come up over the past week is my tendency to "reinvent the wheel." (Also inundate my code with Javadoc comments; Checkstyle has scarred me for life.) I tend to do it because it's what we tend to do in school--our assignments aren't to use HashMaps and priority heaps and skip lists, they're to write them. For this internship, I've thus done a lot of implementing things that have already been implemented, which is not a great use of time. But hopefully I am getting better about this. (I used Apache Commons for the first time this week, which was kind of cool? Also, other things that I'll mention later.)


Reading Group

On Thursday, we had our first reading group meeting of the summer. Reading group is led by Samantha and consists of all interns from across all projects. Since this was our first meeting, we introduced ourselves and took turns explaining a) the projects we're part of and b) our personal projects for the summer. Starting next week, we're going to alternate between presenting/discussing research papers and doing workshops.

Daily Logs

These are more or less lifted from Bitbucket, where I keep a README of these things.

Mon 5/29

Worked on the new data structure and this website.

Tues 5/30

Wrote some brief (not very good) content for this website; set up my new work laptop (I swapped late last week due to some complications); met with Timo to talk about Gradle (and also what to work on re: data structure).

Wed 5/31

Adapted data structure to allow for multiple phones at a time; started figuring out how to collect stats.

Thurs 6/1

Struggled with Gradle things and eventually triumphed; wrote code to collect and output stats; got a university ID card; worked some more on this website.

Fri 6/2

Fought some more with Gradle; slightly altered the data structure; attended team meeting.

Not Work

Vitamin D

We ate lunch outside this week! There's a (not really, but sort of) hidden area outside Newell Simon Hall featuring: a set of benches with little tables (lecture hall desk style) that are useful for eating purposes; flowers (on the other side of glass dividers, which keep the wind out); said glass dividers; and a quote from Newell but not Simon. (That was a poor description and I'm sorry.) At any rate, it was nice to enjoy the sunshine (also Lauren's company; she joined us for lunch on Monday).


  • started my third Star Wars puzzle of the year
  • finally figured out what time the bus comes in the morning (which means I'll be narrowly catching it from now on)
  • realized I forgot to water my cactus
  • read an assortment of Google Books excerpts (which is a terribly unsatisfying habit that I should probably stop), an assortment of books I've already read (a slightly less unsatisfying habit), and a tiny bit of The Winter's Tale

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