February 18, 2005

One week left

February 18, 2005 - Categories: emacs

Seven more days and I’ll be home! I need to think about how I’m going
to spend my summer.

I’ve realized that I don’t _have_ to do a lot of advocacy talks.
People are perfectly capable of taking care of themselves. However, I
do need to do braindumps of the stuff I learned in Japan, if only so
that I can summarize them into presentations.

I also don’t need to worry about computer science education just yet,
as I won’t be able to do much about it at this point in time. Not with
just six months before I start grad school…


What am I going to do?

Adphoto IT geeking

First, there’s my family’s company. Among other things, I want to work

– the Adphoto website
– setting up a good long-distance transfer method for large files: need to write instructions for FTP.
– figuring out how my parents can do stock photography online
– the shoot scheduler

I will set aside regular time for this and my Planner work. =) I think
it will be tons of fun, and quite an experience. The major thinko I
just had is that hey, look, I’ve got practically 24/7 access to a
bunch of users with different needs. I should take advantage of that.
Besides, if we get the processes into place, things will be much

Hanging out with friends

One of the strange things about my trip to Japan is how much time I’ve
actually spent outside my dorm room. This is in stark contrast to some
days at home when it was just Internet room – lunch – Internet room –
dinner – Internet room – sleep. I think that knowing you’ll only be
someplace for six months really wakes you up. I wanted to meet people
and see the sights instead of just staying in my dorm room all the

So you can expect me to be a lot more social when I get back. I want
to see my parents and my sister—and not just a brief glimpse before
going to bed. I want to chat with my friends. I want to challenge
their minds with all these cute little puzzles I’m bringing back home,
or simply find out what they’re interested in. Sure, we all have
blogs, but it’s fun to just relax. =)

This can get expensive, but we’ll find ways of keeping the costs down
so that it’s sustainable. We’ll stay at houses and parks instead of in
malls, for one.

There are so many people I want to talk to, so many people I’d like to
just relax and chat with. =)

‘course I might still go all introverted on occasion, but I think I’ve
tipped over into extrovert mode. =)

Reading up on personal information management

In preparation for grad school, of course.

Street performing

I have a staff, a pair of electric poi, and two diabolo sets. I’m
looking forward to doing pair diabolo with Kathy. That’s not enough
for a full circus-in-a-suitcase kind of gig, but it’s a good start.

Taking lots of strange classes

Cooking, for one.

Daniel S. Weld: Personalization

February 18, 2005 - Categories: -Uncategorized

K. Gajos, R. Hoffmann and D. Weld, “Improving User Interface Personalization” UIST 2004, Santa Fe, NM, October 2004.

D. Weld, C. Anderson, P. Domingos, O. Etzioni, T. Lau, K. Gajos, and S. Wolfman, “Automatically Personalizing User Interfaces” IJCAI-03, 2003.

C. Anderson, P. Domingos and D. Weld, “Web Site Personalizers for Mobile Devices” (IJCAI-01 Workshop on Intelligent Techniques for
Web Personalization)

C. Anderson, P. Domingos and D. Weld, “Adaptive Web Navigation for Wireless Devices” (IJCAI 2001)

C. Anderson, P. Domingos and D. Weld, “Personalizing Web Sites for Mobile Users” (WWW10)

Selected Publications by Daniel S. Weld

[Abrams, 1997] Abrams, D. (1997). Human factors of personal web information spaces. Technical report, Knowledge Media Design Institute Technical Report 1, University of Toronto.

February 18, 2005 - Categories: emacs


“Human factors of personal web information spaces” is a detailed
statistical study of how people use bookmarks, including observations
on filing and navigation patterns.

Many of the issues raised in the paper have been addressed by recent
innovations in bookmarking. For example, browser-based bookmarks allow
you to automatically check if pages have changed or disappeared. The
flat tag-based organization of services such as http://del.icio.us
reduce much of the cognitive load of organizing projects.
http://del.icio.us also offers a chronological view of bookmarks.

This paper made me think about organizational strategies for
categorized tasks. Tasks in Planner and other PIMs that allow you to
directly hyperlink to resources (Microsoft Entourage, Microsoft
Outlook) act as bookmarks, creating a personal information space
annotated by the things you need to do.

Task- and schedule-related personal information suffers from many of
the same problems as the World Wide Web. Information overload comes in
the form of e-mail about tasks and appointments. The inbox is polluted
by irrelevant messages. Task- and schedule-related information tends
to be less chaotic than the Web because the former is personal by
nature, but it still lacks aggregate structure and a global view.

This paper makes me want to look into the organizational strategies of
PIM users. For example, how do people categorize their tasks?
Creation-time filing or sporadic filing? How do they choose
categories? How do they deal with long task lists? Do they really
reorder tasks for priorities, or just scan through them and pick
items? Can I characterize PIM users by scale, like the way Abrams
describes light to heavy bookmark users, citing characteristic

Modification of johnsu01’s scoring

February 18, 2005 - Categories: emacs, planner

The following code allows you to sort tasks based on regexp matches
against the line. It’s fairly simple, but may give people ideas about
fancier task sorting.

(setq planner-sort-tasks-key-function 'planner-sort-tasks-by-score)

(defvar planner-score-rules '(("read" . 50))
  "Alist of planner scoring rules of the form (regexp . score-value).
Tasks with higher scores are listed first.")

(defun planner-sort-tasks-by-score ()
  "Sort tasks by the rule in the table."
  (let ((score 0)
        (case-fold-search t)
        (line (buffer-substring-no-properties (line-beginning-position)
     (lambda (item)
       (when (string-match (car item) line)
         (setq score (- score (cdr item)))))

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Brilliant idea about my summer schedule

February 18, 2005 - Categories: plans

I need to hack a couple of things in Adphoto. For one, the scheduling
system needs to be improved. Also, we need to work out a smooth way to
transfer files to clients.

The best way to get me to work on these things would be for me to get
annoyed with them.

The best way for me to get annoyed with these things would be for me
to have to do them.

So that can be my summer job. If my mom doesn’t mind having me
underfoot, I will work for Adphoto. First, I need to hack scheduling.
In the process, I’ll probably also tweak office communication. When
I’m not scheduling things or improving the scheduling infrastructure,
I can work on making the website more informative.

Sounds like a good plan.

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