Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Got a Mac - Kind of Off Topic, But Not Really

Given the fact that my career was that of an art educator it is amazing that it took me until now to get a Mac.  I finally took the plunge after sitting on the fence since 1984 when I abandoned the Apple IIe for my first IBM compatible.  I got a 20 inch iMac for my husband a couple weeks ago first, and then spent a few weeks getting to know his machine and trying to decide if I should get a macbook pro for myself, or if I should get an iMac too.  I decided on the 24 inch iMac because I still have a working Tablet PC, which I can count on to provide me with computing functionality when I travel.  When the tablet dies it will be time for a Mac Book Air or a Mac Book Pro.

I am not sure if I can meet all of my go needs on the Mac, but I sure hope so, because I have no intention of running windows on the machine.  I am planning to try to find Mac applications for all of my computing needs, not just go.  Those who know me can vouch that I am pretty compulsive about things, so when I make the switch to Mac I am committed.  You should have seen me when I sold Tupperware.  I do little halfway.

So far I have decided to be satisfied with iWork rather than Microsoft Office for productivity.  I might feel compelled to get a Mac version of the Adobe Creative Suite.  I do have an academic version of CS...  yes. the first version.  Since I no longer have academic status I might be compelled to take a course at a local community college and go on an academic spending spree after I decide what I think I need to have.  I am looking at the iLife applications to see if I can make do with them.  I have used Photoshop for so long though, that I think I would have a hard time making due with anything less than Photoshop Elements at least.  We'll see.

I renewed my subscription to so I can watch tutorials on the Mac OS X operating system as well as tutorials for the iLife and iWork applications.  I'll watch everything I can and then cancel the subscription until I think I need to go on another learning frenzy.

What is kind of funny is that the very day my iMac arrived at my door I read and article in the Apple RSS feed set up in my mail program on the iMac.  The article was titled "Meet the new iMac"  I just have to figure that it's only a couple hundred dollars of money I'm out by buying at the wrong time.  If I had waited just a week I would have gotten more Mac for my money... more memory... more speed... more of just about everything,  but you have to buy some time.  Your technology is always going to be old soon, just not usually the same day you get it.

One of the things I invested in is a .Mac account, which comes with an email account and also with disk space and the ability to publish web pages and to sync multiple Macs over the web.  Given that I already have multiple Macs and stand to accumulate more, this sounds like a good thing to me.  One of the things I will do with my .Mac account is to eventually make my lesson sgf files available for download so I can share them with others.  I'll let you all know when they are available.

AGA Ratings Prediction Pans Out

After the Cherry Blossom Tournament in Philadelphia where I went 2-2, I predicted that any ratings change would be glacial and negative. I was right about that as the screen capture from my favorite note keeping application "EverNote" shows...

My rating decreased from -11.39507 to -11.41904

My sigma went from 0.26936 to 0.25708

It's just fun to keep track of.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Back to 8k

I finally made it back to 8k on KGS this morning after winning an auto match game.  It was a 0.5 victory.  It feels good to be 8k again.  I want to continue to play rated on a regular basis, perhaps one game each morning whether I feel like it or not ... kind of like a daily vitamin... but I will bask in the glory of being 8k for today and not risk losing it, at least until my friends have had a chance to see that I managed to make my come back.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Interesting KGS Ratings Graph

Yesterday I was told my one of my students that my ratings graph on KGS looks like a heart attack. It is actually very interesting looking with one large upward spike and one large downward spike. The rest of the graph is pretty solid 8k. Both of the spikes were the result of streaks of winning and loseing respectively in an atttempt to get rid of a "?" at the end of my rating.
After my recent downward spike I have worked my way back up to 9k, which I hope to maintain by playing rated on a consistent basis using automatch. I like automatch because I find less ego involved in those games than games against people I know.

It looks like I have about seven months before the upward spike scrolls off the graph. Until then it will be a very interesting image.