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Saturday, March 7, 2009

Folded faces to the floor

Friday morning, Macro. 16 people, eight girls - a huge class by Honours standards. Halfway through the lecture I lost the will to live. Afterwards I realised this was because Prof A Macro was using a high-speed introductory approach while referring in detail to articles I hadn't read (there were 179 pages of articles for this week!). Nonetheless, the Macro lecture kinda ruined my day.

Macro will be assessed by way of assignments (at most five), an exam, and a critical written piece on an article of the lecturers' choice. Normally this course would be taught in the second half of the year, so we'd be warmed-up and moderately well informed before starting this piece of work. As it is, we're still undergrads at heart, and the piece is due in just 5.5 weeks. I read the article today. I'm not quite sure where to go next.

Friday afternoon, Growth. 11 people, four girls. Dr Growth is a bit of a legend, and his first lecture was a tour de force, ranging from the paleolithic human brain to the sexual habits of Chinese peasants. As always with Dr Growth's courses, assiduous attention to the literature will be required to make sense of the material. Assessment is by way of an exam and two presentations, each accompanied by an essay. As the class is another huge one, we're going to have trouble getting through all those presentations (two per lecture for the entire second half? Really?).

Friday reading summary:

  • What bad luck the Honours room doesn't have air conditioning.
  • What good luck it has opening windows which face into the prevailing wind.
  • What bad luck the prevailing wind makes the blinds rattle.
  • What good luck you can raise the blinds to stop them rattling.
  • What bad luck the windows face the sun for 11 months of the year.
  • What good luck we can sneak off to the undergrad areas to study.

In other news, the School computers don't have a font installed that can render TeX-generated ligatures (and some symbols), so if you try to print out a TeX-generated PDF from them, you get:

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