Tuesday, July 09, 2002

Having Embarked on the Week

Whoof. The work has come back with a vengeance, but spirits remain high. It's looking like a week of ten-hour days will be necessary to get all the work done that needs doing by Friday. At least most of the work involved is challenging and fun, unlike some I could mention.

One of the projects I'm working on involves scoring fill-in-the-bubble tests a la the SAT and aptitude tests of yesteryear. You remember -- #2 pencil only? :-) Today's desktop scanner technology makes the hardware end trivial, but I have a new appreciation for the software problems one has to solve. Remember how there was always a pattern of black blocks, and usually a lopped-off corner or even holes at one edge of the page? That's all to minimize the possibility of misaligned pages, because most of the generic mark-detection algorithms out there aren't nearly good enough to compensate for even a few degrees of skew. God help you if there's any (inconsistent) warping introduced by a sheet feeder. The scanner we're using has a sheet feeder, but thankfully it warps consistently so we can just draw our little sensor rectangles in line with the warpage.

I'm using Visual Studio .NET and C# for the job, and I'm liking the tools better the more I use them. Like playing with Tinkertoys. :-D And yes, it really is that much like Java.

<ChrisRock>I think Scott McNealy's gonna sue somebody!</ChrisRock>

Anything else going on? Not much, considering the long hours, but I'm sure I'll get back to a routine soon enough.


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