Monday, November 19, 2007

Hey, It's Julie Singing the Ninth!

Our own Julie S. was recently in Germany for a big international sing-out of Beethoven's Ninth.

I have no idea what they're saying in this German news clip about the thing, but if you look fast you can spot her. That's her in the lower right of the frame about 0:25 in, just before they pan down to the pair of blondes.

Julie said that the American and Iranian contingents exchanged apologies for their respective Big Honchos. How much violence would the world save, I wonder, if we could just give more people the opportunity to tell their counterparts "Geez, we're not all like that. Really!"

I never got to do that when I was a grad student.

I guess, never having been admitted, technically I never was a grad student. I just took all the fun grad-level comp sci courses because the Systems Lab, where I worked, also ran the enrollment system. I suppose they figured that they'd never keep the labbies from hacking it, so why not make a virtue out a necessity and let them insert themselves into whatever they want? (The Lab was also where I learned the useful phrase "went into hunker-down mode" to describe relationships with vendors.)

Heck of a perk, those classes, for which I am duly grateful. Probably would have bagged a recommendation that would have let me into graduate school if I hadn't been in quite so far over my head. It all came crashing down when I vaporized 105 student and faculty accounts two weeks before finals, but that's a story for another day. Let's just say that I've still retain the skepticism -- nay, paranoia -- about backups that I acquired that night.

Just because your backup procedure reports no errors does not mean that your tuchis is covered. Mine ran without complaint for a month and a half -- without writing a thing to the tape. Oops.


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