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The TAPAC graduate exchange program is a new program being developed. The idea is that a student completes course work at an institution in one continent, either the US or Europe, then completes the thesis research at an institution on the other continent. The outcome of this should be a more culturally aware graduate who has an education not only in the field of study, but also in international skills. The purpose of this blog is to document my experiences in the program and illustrate the value of international exposure.

Monaco Grand Prix

One of the first car races I can remember seeing on TV was the Monaco Grand Prix. I don’t remember the exact year but it was in the early 2000s and the beginning of the Michael Schumacher days. I don’t remember who won but I do remember my interest in the track. It is like no other track in the world. It is a street circuit with a hill climb, hairpin corner, tunnel, and passes directly next to a bay. I didn’t know it that day but over time I learned how all of these intriguing aspects come together to form the most difficult track in Formula 1 and one of the most prestigious racing events of the year. Read more…

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Initial results from 8cm hydraulic parameters

In the past two weeks I have begun to thoroughly address the spatial relationships in my data. I had three approaches in mind for mapping the hydraulic parameters. The first is a strait forward universal kriging of each variable (independently). This approach is not expected to give the best results but will provide a baseline to compare other approaches with. The second is collocated cokriging of each variable with one of the exhaustively sampled variables. This should improve interpolation results if there is a spatial relationship with one of the exhaustive variables. The third is cokriging with all of the hydraulic parameters together and collocated cokriging with an exhaustive variables. Read more…

Research Update

The past few weeks have not held many conclusions. The only decisions I have made prior to this week are with transforming variables and how to accommodate the 3d structure of the data. These weeks have mostly consisted of filling in knowledge gaps and learning about relationships in my data. I also revisited a few inversions to try to improve results. Read more…

Giro d’Italia

In 1997 I watch my first grand tour, bicycling stage race. It was the Tour de France and Jan Ulrich won. At that time cycling was not a popular sport in the US. pre Lance Armstrong many people paid no attention at all. In fact, the race only shown at 2-3am, 15hrs after its completion. In order to watch it, you had to record it on VHS and play it the next day. For me, the next day meant when my father got home from work at 5-6. 30hrs after the race had completed, I finally got to see it. During the lance days, Outdoor Life Network (OLN) began showing the race live. On mountain stages they would even do an extended coverage that started at 6am. I can remember waking up to watch the race on these very important days. Along with the tour, OLN also began to broadcast the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España, the other two grand tours. Read more…

Learning the Hard (Fun) Way

In my quest to understand the sources of error from inversion and ways to consider mitigating them I stumbled on a question for which I couldn’t find an answer. Read more…

“Appointment” at the Police Station

In one of my first posts I discussed the paperwork and multiple trips to the post office for a residence permit. After all of the hassle and various taxes and fees I was handed a receipt with the time and date of my appointment at the police station. Well, my “appointment” was last week and as it turns out the appointment is not so much an appointment as it is a suggestion. Read more…

Moving Forward with van Genuchten Parameters

I’ve decided try the analysis using the van Genuchten parameters. The first thing I did was to create two dummy variables, one to indicate curves where a variable m could give a better fit (m error) and one to indicate curves where dual porosity may exist. Read more…