Friday, March 1, 2013

Circuits, furloughs and diets, oh my!

I finished up my Advanced Circuit Analysis class and moved right on into Advanced Modulation last week.  Advanced Modulation is all about analog-to-digital circuits and digital-to-analog circuits.  I'll admit that I've had more than a little confusion with this new class than I did with the last but I'll get it.  Having a good teacher makes it easier and we do have a good teacher.  He's probably mid-to-late seventies but I can honestly say he's the coolest teacher I've ever had in my life.  He has LIVED and has lots of stories to tell and knowledge to share.  We adore him.

Yesterday we built a pulse amplitude modulation circuit.  A PAM.  This is mine.  It basically digitizes an analog sine wave.   

This is how the signal looks on the oscilloscope.  Yeah, I did that.  Totally cool stuff, yo. 

Complex circuit building can be stressful.  It helps to have a cool teacher.  It also helps to have footage of 70's Allman Brothers concerts playing while you're doing the tedious work of building said complex circuits.  :)

They told us at work a couple of weeks ago to prepare ourselves for the furloughs that are coming as a result of the sequester.  They really won't affect me, as I have been "furloughed" since New Year's Eve.  I went part time when I went back to school so I'm good.  I've heard so much griping and fussing about these furloughs and how "I'm gonna lose my house" and "I'm gonna lose my truck".  Dude.  If you are going to lose your house because you're losing ONE DAY A WEEK'S pay, you have TOO MUCH HOUSE.  So many of my coworkers have gotten so used to working 12-hour days and racking up all that overtime that they honestly don't know how they're going to get by on 32 hours a week.  I've been working at the base for a year come the 12th of this month and I can already tell you that there is a lot of fat that can be trimmed out there.  An ungodly amount of waste goes on out there and that includes supplies as well as manpower.  Call me a traitor, I don't care.  I'm just not your typical government employee.  I don't spend hours chit-chatting, leaning on my tool box and wasting time.  I do what I know how to do (which is becoming a LOT!) and what I don't know, I work with someone who does.  I work.  

I don't have much of a weight-loss update.  I've been teetering between 18 and 20 pounds for two weeks now!  I've hit my first plateau and since I've been doing this losing weight thing since my jeans were acid-washed and had zippers on the legs, I know that I have to bump up the exercise.  I lost these twenty pounds virtually with no exercise, unless you count climbing up on top of an F-15 and back down again fifteen times a day as exercise (and I do!).  I took my fitness leave one night last week and walked on the running track.  The nice, bouncy, rubber running track that's absolute heaven on your ankles and joints.  It just got dark on me too fast.  I cannot wait for the time to change and the days to get longer and warmer.  I will walk that track for days.

Things are rocking on pretty smoothly for me these days.  I go to school, go to work, go to sleep and then do it all again the next day.  Two more months until I graduate and things can get back to normal.  Whatever that is.  :)


  1. Good to hear you are doing well.
    You sooooooo cool, w/yo 'lectronics stuff!!
    It IS interesting to read about also.
    Take care. LUV ya

  2. Sounds good. You are Amazing with all you have accomplished this past year. Real proud of you. Take care and enjoy your time off. Love you.