I never thought tech problems could be so exhausting, but apparently on some level they can be.
I was taking or participating in some course on structural biology. The professor was unable to get the modeling software working on all the computers the students brought/were using, so the next best plan (apparently) was to remotely install Windows XP on every machine from an image disc that preloaded whatever the modeling software was (PyMOL perhaps?). For some reason, this seemed to be beyond the professor’s know how, so I offered to do it1.
This involved me setting up some server–esque software on the Windows 7 side of my laptop2, which was far from as simple as it was thought to be. Dreamland time is often ridiculously inaccurate, but it felt like I took an hour to get this accomplished. Even with that taken care of, I still have to setup the network such that every computer could netboot from my own. That took another two hours I swear, and so I had eaten up the entire 3ish hour allotment for the course.
This was very atypical for dreamland; my dreams are often much more abstract & vague in nature. This was a much more clear scenario, despite the obvious theme of “being unable to perform.”
Last night I was driving myself mad prior to leaving work over some ridiculous data. I have been trying to get fluorescence anisotropy to work in the lab lately, and while I can get it to work in principle and on some control samples, trying to get it to work in some experimental setups seems to be nigh impossible. The tighter & tighter I put restrictions on the experiment, the more bizarre the data seems to end up, I swear.
Additionally, my resolve last night to revamp my website probably contributed as well. I wonder if subconsciously I’m dubious about what I’ll get out in the end after it is all said and done. I don’t really have much of a choice. Although, I went to sleep, pondering on whether or not I want to make this blog more professional, keep it more personal, or split it and set it up for both. Who knows; I’ve got time yet.
Anyhoo, off to plotting my next (potentially boggling) experiment to tweak this anisotropy assay.
1Very reminiscent of something I tried to do a couple weeks ago to help during our casual departmental seminars. A prof’s display wasn’t running to the projector, so I went up, tried to fix it, and failed terribly. It turned out a few minutes later that the adapter was just shot, much to my embarrassment in trying to look like I knew what I was doing.
2Alas, science knows no bounds, especially when it comes to operating systems. I would love to work only on the Mac OS X side of things, but I always have to keep Windows around (via Bootcamp) for the sporadic piece of software that is only available in the Windows operating system environment.