CRA-Wx DMP Program
Katie Coons - The University of Texas at Austin
Distributed Mentor Program Summer 2004

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Week 3

At work this week I got everything to compile on my PowerBook using makefiles, and then began working on getting it working in a good debug environment.  I quickly became frustrated with Eclipse because it was incredibly slow on my laptop.  I decided to attempt to get it working in OS X's development environment instead.  By the end of the week I had a debug environment setup in which I was able to step through the program and see how it was put together.  In addition, Julia and I both began writing small C programs and using GCC to produce assembly code for them so we could get an idea of how the PowerPC ISA works.

Our mentor, Kathryn McKinley, finally returned this week.  We arranged to have weekly meetings with her for a half hour each week to discuss our progress and ask any questions we have.  In addition, we arranged to alternate eating lunch with her on Fridays so we can ask her questions as a mentor regarding graduate school, balancing family and academics, etc.  Each week Julia and I will also be attending the Speedway group meeting and the TRIPS group meeting.  Speedway is the Compiler Research Group, and TRIPS is the group that works on the TRIPS architecture which is closely related.  Attending these meetings will give us an opportunity to see what life is like for graduate students, as we will read and discuss papers, see research presentations, etc.  Kathryn gave us 4 papers to read to help us get ideas for thesis projects, and to give us background on the work the various groups are doing.  Attending the TRIPS meeting on Thursday, I found I was actually very interested in the work they are doing as it was closely related to the work we did in my Advanced Digital Logic Design class last semester where we wrote the Hardware Description Language for a processor and placed it on a chip, and then spent the rest of the semester attempting to optimize it by any means possible.

I began ballroom lessons this week!  The Ballroom Dance Club at UT offers summer lessons for 9 hours/week at only $30 for the whole summer, which is really a great deal.  The lessons were mostly for beginners, but it was kind of nice because I got to help out the instructors and the people were all very nice.  One of the instructors actually asked if I wanted to practice with him this summer which could be really good for me.  I also made some new friends that go salsa dancing and swing dancing.  On Monday, Kartik, Matt and I taught Julia how to play racquetball so on Monday and Wednesday we played some doubles games which was a lot of fun.  On Thursday I went to the Austin Swing Syndicate's weekly dance which had a live, 12-piece band.  On Friday I stayed home to do laundry and ended up playing poker with some guys from my dorm.  Saturday morning I got up at 6am and went for another run around Town Lake.  I improved my time by quite a bit this week!  After the run, we all went out to Pace Bend for some cliff jumping.  We swam in Lake Travis and jumped off cliffs into the lake all afternoon.  It was a lot of fun, aside from the sunburn I got!  Saturday night Raj had a pool party and a barbeque at his new place, and we all stayed up late playing cards and drinking out of a watermelon :)

Raj, myself, Bob, and Serita crawling into Lake Travis at Pace Bend

Raj wearing Maria's float for some odd reason...

Kartik, myself, Bob, and Maria by the picnic table at Pace Bend

Raj, Alison, myself, Serita, Bob, and Maria.  Again, I don't know why Raj is wearing the float... nor do I know why Kartik took this picture at such a funny angle :)

Week:  All |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 |  5 |  6 |  7 |  8 |  9 |  10
Home   |    About Me    |   My Mentor    |   Project and Goals    |   Journal    |   People    |   Deliverables
The University of Texas at Austin