Wednesday, October 5, 2011


I spent a chunk of time at work the last couple of days trying to figure out how to get some data formatted properly so a computer program would read it. It wanted what's called a distance matrix, which is a listing of the names of the mosquito populations I'm working with for this one study along the top, and in the same order along the side of a spreadsheet, and then the distance in between each pair of population is there where the two pops intersect. There's actually two copies of the info in the matrix, mirror images. Not sure why the programs aren't smart enough to do what they need to do with just one copy, but I'll do what they want.

Except this time, it wouldn't read the file correctly, and smushed the numbers over to the side and left some spaces blank, so I proceeded to tweak the file, rename it (geofile2, geofile3, etc.) and try again. I got up to geofile19, and that worked. It looked suspiciously like the first ones, but I had the names in the wrong format at first.

I don't really mind this kind of puzzle-solving. I did it a lot when I was in school, and the software for population genetics is mostly freeware and it all has its quirks. But I'm afraid there were some colorful words said in the lab (I was by myself) when it wouldn't work and I hadn't come up with the next tweak yet. But now, the program should be running over the next couple of days, and give us some good information.

In other news, I listed Graycie on Craigslist this morning, with a little bit of a heavy heart. The circumstances of my life just aren't quite right for me to have this as a second vehicle, although her practical-ness still is so appealing. The apartment on wheels.

And in other other news, Mr W is going off on a three day field trip with school today. He's been so excited, it's been fun. Also a good experience for him to run down a checklist of stuff he needs, and make sure he's got it all. They invited the parents to go with them on their "epic hike" tomorrow - an eight mile hike that includes something called "Heart Attack Hill". Man, if my Spinning hasn't let me hike at the same pace with a bunch of 5th graders, I'm going to be bummed. Actually, I'm not so worried about keeping up cardio-wise. I am a little concerned that my knee and back have hurt some when I've hiked earlier this season. Preemptive Advil and stretching are in order for sure. Should be fun.


  1. The rulebook clearly states that if I'm by myself, there is no penalty...


Hi, sorry to make the humans do an extra step.