It seems like I’m working on a number of things that I can’t talk about, at the moment, which – while the work itself is extremely stimulating – can get a little frustrating. Over my 7+ years of blogging, it seems I’ve developed a visceral need to share what I’m working on (I wonder if this is is an example of Social Media changing behaviour in general… something to ponder when I eventually find the time :-).
This focus on more internal activities is, to some degree, something I anticipated when I started my “new” role but it certainly feels like I’m going through a local peak of working on internally-focused stuff, right now.
I can share what I’m doing in my spare time, though, even using some of my spare time to do so. [insert appropriate recursion joke here] :-)
Following on from the Coursera class I attended on Linear Algebra delivered by Brown University, I’ve now started an edX class entitled Foundations of Computer Graphics delivered by Berkeley. This class builds nearly perfectly on a lot of the fundamentals covered in the Linear Algebra class, which is fantastic.
Somewhat ironically (considering who I ended up working for) I had to miss the Computer Graphics module in my 2nd year at university because it ran at the same time as my French studies, and those were mandatory for someone planning to study in France during their 3rd year (which I did). So this is an itch I’ve been meaning to scratch for some time even if, over the years, I’ve ended up teaching myself a lot of the fundamentals that this course is now covering.
But anyway, so it goes. It certainly feels good to be pulling together low-level Computer Graphics concepts in a structured way, like this. And the class itself is very interesting: the base language for this one is C++ and the graphics framework used is OpenGL, so it’s certainly exercising parts of my brain that I don’t make use of regularly, these days. I’ve completed the first two homework assignments, but the next two (there are four, in total) are at least an order of magnitude more complex. Hopefully I’ll find the time to complete the last assignment, which is to write a complete ray-tracer from scratch.
Here’s a screenshot from my latest submission (most of the application was provided, I only had to add a few lines of code to flesh out various transformations).In case you’re wondering about the title of this post, it comes from the 7th of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and relates to the importance of focusing on learning and personal development. Which is not to say I consider myself “highly effective”, but I do find this particular habit to be of great importance. And I’m not the only one.
Right then… as it’s the last day of my children’s school holidays tomorrow, we’re heading across to Europa Park for the day and I’ll be back online next week.photo credit: jjay69 via photopin cc