Its down to two weeks before I head back to college to pursue my encore career in Biology/Ecology. I liked the way one of my blog friends over at The Other 95% blog put it in a recent comment on my blog. One of the blog authors is a "recovering computer scientist turned marine biologist". Except for the marine portion, its a pretty good fit.
The timing couldn't be better (well maybe I should have started a few years back!). Rumors, rumors, and more rumors indicate the possibility of significant layoffs at my current job. It's comforting to know that I have a very good plan B and need not concern myself about the layoffs.
In getting ready for school I have purchased my textbooks, have my student ID, bought some supplies, and have even started working through the material. The biology is fascinating. I have worked through 6 chapters so far. The first two to three chapters were mainly review for me, but chapters 4-6 dove in deep - cell structure, membranes, and energy/metabolism. All of the concepts are coming very easy for me, but I continue to be concerned about memorizing all of the terms. Overall, my confidence has increased with the work. The cell is a remarkably complex foundation for life. It seems very specific in its needs, yet puts up with everything we throw at it. Very cool.
One of the blogs I monitor, Webware, had a post highlighting the most important web applications for students. I have already been using some of them such as Google Docs, Calendar, and gmail. After the Webware post I signed up for Remember The Milk, Facebook, Courses 2.0, and Study Groups. Wow, I should be set for almost anything now!
Its amazing how different this school experience will be than my original take now over 20 years ago. The web is used for everything. One of my classes is delivered over the web. I registered for classes and paid my tuition over the web. I discovered I have access to all of the science journals in the library over the web. Working for a high tech company I was thinking I might be taking a back step with regards to technology, but the university appears to be miles ahead.
On completely different notes, I have some Olympic related storied. Ok, only partially related.
First is the Olympic edition of the I and the Bird #80 blog carnival including submitted bird and bird related stories from around the world. BTW, a newer version of I and the Bird #81 blog carnival is now available as well (not Olympic themed).
The second is some blog coverage at the Not Exactly Rocket Science blog regarding the inclination of referees in tae kwon do matches to award more points to the competitors wearing red. It appears there might be judging controversy before the matches even start.