Today has brought me wisdom. Maybe not of anything particularly important, but I am wiser none the less.
I was viciously attacked by a turnstile today, don’t laugh, IT REALLY HURT. Security here at KAIST can at some times be laughable and at others less so. There’s this building, N10 (which is N for North), where students go to silently stare at their screens all through the day and night. This place is dead quiet even thought it’s pretty much filled at every hour of the day (and night). To leave the building one has to slap ones student ID card on the rfid reader by the turnstile gate, well if one, say me, were to be lost in thought and accidentally attempts to walk through behind someone while it’s still open – it will attempt to crush the perpetrator. No joke. Lost in thought I was shocked when the gates crashed into my sides, I yelped loudly and hopped back, and proceeded to shout profanities in Spanish at the machine. Get this – not a soul turned around to see what all the commotion was about, the response to what had just happened was non existent. To the extent that I wondered if it had even happened, it had (I can attest to that with my bruises). Who the hell builds such a brutal machine… they really must be out for blood.
The attack led me to a realisation that I’ve been on the brim on since I arrived in Korea, but the penny didn’t quite drop till today. Koreans for some reason don’t see or hear what’s going on around them. I’m clumsy enough to have fleetingly noted this before, I have ninja moves but they’ve developed in parallel with my clumsiness (I’ll drop something only to kick it in the air, to nearly get ahold of it, and then nearly drop it again and flap around till I finally have ahold of the object with both hands), as a glance around to see the damage always results in me straightening up having realised that nobody noticed. It’s irritated me a few times, like the times I’ve actually hurt myself and wondered why no-one reached out to give a hand. One of my main critiques of Sweden is how so many people choose to look away, and I thought that the same thing was happening here – but it’s not!! I might experiment to see to what extent this goes.
So lesson learnt; Korean turnstiles are dangerous and my mishaps are not being noted.
Second lesson today; Ada Lovelace. Beautiful name, isn’t it? We’ll I’m embarrassed, because I hadn’t heard of this woman before. She was the first computer programmer!
…Her notes on the engine include what is recognised as the first algorithm intended to be carried out by a machine. Because of this, she is often regarded as the first computer programmer.
How cool is that?! I will definitely be reading up on this kickass lass.
Her name actually came up in this 80’s based geek series the bearded man and I started watching – it’s called Halt and Catch Fire.
Set in the early 1980s, series dramatizes the personal computing boom through the eyes of a visionary, an engineer and a prodigy whose innovations directly confront the corporate behemoths of the time. Their personal and professional partnership will be challenged by greed and ego while charting the changing culture in Texas’ Silicon Prairie. – Written by AMC
Give it a try!
Best, and take care,