Thursday, July 2, 2009

Packing, or "What Science Looks Like"

Packing is going smoothly (even if Windows setup isn't). I have a relatively small amount of stuff to bring. Most of the space is going to be taken up with my diving gear (especially since I'm bring two BC's, don't ask me why).

A small amount of science stuff will also come with me.

You can see most of the things I'll be bringing, including 70% ethanol for fixing the hermit crab noses I'll be pulling off, filters for dealing with plankton (hopefully crab larvae), lab tape, about a thousand 0.2 ml PCR tubes for samples, some Falcon tubes for random stuff, underwater camera housing, holder for the laser and safety glasses, my dissection tools, and my dive slate. Oh, and don't forget the 30,000 wires and connectors for all my electronics. There is another bag-full for the high-speed camera!

I look forward to dragging this crap all over LAX.

Windows XP sucks HARD CORE

I was always a PC person, until I got my first Mac. It changed my life by opening my eyes to how wrong I was about what a person's relationship with their computer should be. It shouldn't be angry and sad and unhappy, it should be the opposite of all those things. Delighted and happy and happier are all things that I feel towards my Mac now after crossing over.

This is reinforced my the events of this morning. I got Parallels for Mac OS X in order to run the software that came with the high-speed camera in Moorea. I installed Windows XP this morning, and that went OK, until 5 minutes into running Internet Explorer (aka Please take a crap on my day) when XP experienced its first crash. AWESOME. So, install Service Pack 2.

EPIC FAIL. SP2 will not install because it's looking for older updates which my version of XP doesn't have (because it is an older copy), because apparently if Microsoft was a small child, it would drown in three inches of water. Now XP won't boot at all.

Thank you, Microsoft, for reinforcing my opinion that Macs are far superior to anything you will ever produce.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Umbrella crab (Cryptolithodes sitchensis)

The parents brought me a camera and underwater housing when they visited a few weeks ago. I got to take it diving on Thursday, and the pictures turned out pretty good. Here they are:

Friday, June 26, 2009

Field Season 2009 - Moorea, French Polynesia

Hi all,

I thought this might be a good place to record all the things that happen to me during my trip to Moorea. I'll try to update it as much as I can, and provide as many pictures as I can to anyone interested. I'll start today with an intro to the place I'll be staying and a bit about what I'll be doing while I'm there.

Moorea, French Polynesia (the island beside Tahiti) is home to the Univ. of California, Berkeley's Richard B. Gump South Pacific Research Station. It hosts, among others, the Moorea BioCode Project which aims to catalog all living (non-microbial) life on the land and in the waters surrounding the island, as well as being one of the National Science Foundation's Long Term Ecological Research Sites. Here's a picture of the station:

This will be our home for 28 days of July. During this time, I'll be helping my friend Molly with her research and conducting some of my own. More of that to follow.