Ben Crowder

Blog: #school

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In my interactive systems class, we recently had an assignment to make something with either a laser cutter or a 3D printer. I ended up making a fairly simple pad out of wood on the laser cutter:


The design only took five minutes or so in Illustrator, and I’m fairly happy with how it turned out. (I do think having an engraved area in the middle for the index cards to sit in would help, though.)

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Current status: in the thick of thesis proposal revisions. (Just finished the first full draft, with the final deadline coming next week, and the plan is I’ll present the proposal mid-December sometime.)

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Current school status: in the middle of writing my thesis proposal, with a deadline of mid-November. I’m aiming to defend it mid-December, spend the first half of next year finishing my research and writing my thesis, and do my final thesis defense next August.

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Quick update: In my limited free time, I’ve been working on some exciting new publishing projects that I should be able to release next month. I can’t say more about them right now, but they’re coming.

Also, I’ve found that while school does take up a lot of time, I function best if I keep a few side projects going, no matter how slowly. (Initially I thought I’d put all the side projects on hold until I finish the master’s.)

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Blogging is low on the priority list at the moment, thanks to school. The preliminary classes for the master’s degree are going well. I’m writing assembly for my computer systems class, and I have to say, I really like assembly. (No sarcasm.) It’s beautiful and simple in a way I didn’t expect. I don’t see myself using it much, but it’s a good tool for the belt.

Oh, with Press, I realized a few days ago that it’s a good candidate for the first implementation of Low Ink (a JSON-based page description language that compiles to PDF). I’ll be re-architecting that part of Press so that it uses Low Ink. Also hoping to finish up the text part of Press (HarfBuzz, etc.) soon so that it’s usable for more than just basic drawing. (I’m dealing with font subsetting and encoding stuff at the moment.)

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As of a few weeks ago, I’m now planning to apply for the master’s program in computer science at BYU, with a thesis focus in computer graphics (at this point I’m thinking maybe photorealistic rendering). If I do get admitted, I’ll start in January 2018 (I have some background courses to take first because my undergraduate degree wasn’t in computer science) and plan to finish by April 2021.

Anyway, I mention it mainly because things will probably slow down a bit on here for the next four years. I’ll try to keep blogging, but non-CG side projects will mostly be on the back burner till after I’m done.

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