2011 has been an interesting year. Between the stupid earthquakes and the pressure of finishing my PhD, I have been silent because I have had nothing interesting to talk about (cf. twitter...).
But there is a light at the end, I'm on track to complete my thesis, 'Biologically Inspired Visual Control of Flying Robots', in December/January.
I'm excited to say that I have accepted a job at the Institute of Molecular pathology, in a research group studying the mechanisms of visual flight control in insects. Technology wise, it is a perfect fit; the experimental apparatus involves a multi-camera real-time flight tracking system and estimator for multiple targets in an augmented reality flight arena. It is open-source (ish), and python/numpy. Research wise, it allows me to investigate some of the assumptions and unknowns in the biomimetic control systems I implemented during my PhD. And it is in Vienna, 1st Feb, 2012!
This is a career change for me. In the last few years it became increasingly clear that I was morally uncomfortable with the use of UAVs as weapons (drones). Previously I had consoled myself with there existing an ethical and philosophical difference between 'the application of research' and 'the action of research'. When It came to looking for work, and considering who to work for, this difference was often eroded.
It has also been particularly frustrating being in New Zealand for the last 12 months and watching our flaccid national response to the three recent challenges here (world cup, earthquake, rena oil spill).
gnome-tweak-tool is coming along nicely. I have some things in bugzilla to address, but I am happy with the state and direction.
GNOME 3 has helped my productivity greatly, maximized windows, keyboard navigation and less distractions have been welcome changes.
This post has been brought to you by procrastination.