Tutor gone AWOL

Had a call from Mark Jones (I think), head OU guy on the course.  He wanted to clarify my course title, since I mentioned researching other cosmological parameters in my objectives.  I don’t really want to do that – I want to concentrate on the Hubble constant and strong lensing!  So that was cleared up very easily.

It seems my tutor Gary has disappeared.  I hope he’s ok. Mark wasn’t sure who was going to mark the last TMA, but said I should go on, and email him if required. Shouldn’t be a problem – house is getting to the almost-ready stage for work – just want to avoid worrying about it much until after the marathon April 13th. 🙂

Note to self:  check how close next TMA date is to April 13th!

Every year..

Every year I plan not to do my coursework on the deadline night.  Every year I fail.  At least, in the end I do.

This year, I’m hoping the new house will give me the extra time I need to properly study it, so I don’t mind being late for now.

3 hours studying tonight.  I looked up some references and some people to find the 3 papers I have to review (and actually, they’re quite good).  Quick summaries, alas, of each one.  Then I reviewed my skills, and reckon I’m fine with a bit of revision.

I updated my plan from last year, and added in lots more time, and contingency (I was quite busy last year with work and other uni subjects, but it’s not so bad now).

I’ve thrown it all together and got it sent off in time! 🙂 Yay!  It’s a load off the mind, even if it’s not the best work.  Hopefully I’ll reclaim those marks on the final report.

I need to create a record-card system for storing links to good resources, as I found a fair few good papers today.  That’s the next job!

The title?:  “Calculating the Hubble Constant from Gravitational Lensing effects.”

Hubble Constant

I read through my GL books and sketched out some ideas for titles. I didn’t want to do the same thing as last year, which was weak gravitational lensing, as it’s basically statistical analysis, and I prefer the strong lensing ideas.

Dark matter is too complex an argument to have in a 5000 word essay, so I really don’t want to go down that route – I have a basic dislike of the stuff anyway.  Ten quid says they don’t find it with the LHC.

Planets are done.  Everyone talks about planets (found through microlensing I believe). We have 9(ish) planets in our system – how many have life?  One.  Rubbish.  Planets aren’t exciting.  They’re all rocky.

 So, I’m going to look at the caulcation of the Hubble Constant.  This gets me into Cosmology :), strong lensing of Quasars :), and there’s a wealth of literature.  Plus, I can compare with the WMAP measurements.

So, something like “determining the hubble constant with gravitational lensing”.  Just checking with the tutor.  I’ve also updated/revised Project Plan and Skills docs.  Just the others to do tomorrow. 

Project Kickoff

Ok, I’m a bit late kicking off the project, but I’ve been recovering from stuff, moving house, running half-marathons and so on.  Things happen.  Plus, I’m ahead since I did the first half of this last year.  I firmly believe this will be a great deal easier once I’m properly moved into the new house.

This blog is in place of the Project Log – it’s a personal record of my activities, and needs to be submitted with each coursework assignment.  I thought the blog would be more easily accessible.

Today, I’ve collected all the necessary docs from the web, prepared templates for each deliverable, and I’m starting a mind map.  I’m again going for Gravitational Lensing, as I find it interesting, but I’m going to do a different area.  This year, I’m backed up by last year’s S357 Space Time and Cosmology course.

Paris Half-Marathon 2008

I made it!  Two hours, ten minutes, and about 7 seconds 🙂

This is a bit of a surprise, considering my usual problems.  Especially since I thought I ws going through a fairly bad patch (hadn’t been able to run for two weeks before, and could only manage an amble to Notre Dame the day before).  In fact, I’d only managed three runs this year, of about 5 kms each.  So this was impressive.  I was happy to make it halfway to be honest.

Today, of course, I’m in a vast amount of muscle pain and can barely walk – but that’s not surprising.  No sign of ME-style tiredness yet though! 🙂