Wednesday, July 20, 2016

July 20

Just the other day, I was watching Elementary (Sherlock Holmes tv show) with my family. In one of the episodes, Professor Isaac Pike, part of an apocalypse think tank, and his student, Erin Rabin, framed a computer program, Bella, for a murder they committed (by uploading a virus onto the computer which flashed images across Bella's screens and induced a fatal seizure in her creator).

The motive? Well, as President Truman believed, the only way to provoke public action is to "scare the hell out of the American people." Prof. Pike believed that the instant true AI (artificial intelligence) was developed was the beginning of the end of the human race.

Anyways, as we listened to Prof. Kanan's wonderful talk on his work on, among other things, deep machine learning & perception, and active vision, all I could think of was Sherlock asking Bella questions to see if she was an example of true AI and how his (Kanan's) work was contributing to the end of humanity.

And then I thought: maybe I'd like to study this in college.

Besides pondering apocalypse scenarios, I participated in another part of the visual perception interns' study (which was actually quite difficult). (Also, I've always wanted to be a test subject.) The free pizza before the lectures is always a bonus.

Then, I got some more real work done. I reduced the R band images, then moved on to plate solving. First, Astroimagej decided to be a pain, so I had to upload the images onto to plate solve. The I band plate solving went well, but when I was almost done with plate solving for the R band images, I noticed that the image, while beautiful, was full of donuts and had a vignette!
Part of the image.
I checked to see what folder I had uploaded from and realized I had accidentally used the raw images instead of the calibrated ones. Everytime I uploaded a picture when I switched to R band it went to a new folder and I had to navigate back to my folder with calibrated R band images (which didn't happen with the I band images). Clearly, I missed it at least once. It wasn't a big deal but it would have saved me some time to download it correctly the first time! Just to be sure, I re-plate solved the previous images too (I also double checked all the plate solved I band images in ds9 to make sure I had used the calibrated images).

Despite that, it was a very productive day. Tomorrow, I will continue with image reduction and plate solving.

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