This week may also be referred to as “Challenge Week”, “Crazy Week”, or “Heartbreak Week” depending on the perspective and whether that perspective is colored with 29-week pregnancy hormones.  🙂

The chemical inventory project is legitimately involved with work, so I can work on it openly during the day.  But I really should be studying safety info.  So time will need to be divided between those two, and then my regular project work (still unfortunately stalled).

The midterm exam for IOOP is on Wednesday evening.  Lots to study for, although *thankfully* it is open book (at least with our Bloch text) and we get one double-sided 8 x 11 page of notes to fill up to the gills with anything that may be useful.  Personally, the use of approved ‘cheat sheets’ seems a brilliant way to get students to review and write course material.  Also a perfect way to wedge the info in the brain.  Coincidence?  Likely not.  Sneaky way of getting people to learn stuff, I’d say.  There’s a lot more reviewing and writing to be done, and some more reading too, but I’ve still got two evenings and whatever I can squeeze into Wednesday prior to 7pm.  🙂

Although not a huge priority before Wednesdays exam, I’m inching the chemical inventory project along by hashing out what kind of barcodes to use and learning what kind of spreadsheet to xml doc tactics may be available.  I’m using a freeware barcode generator to make all chem information scannable: location, name, cas#, qty/uom, hazard ratings, and warnings (for now).  The format for any barcode generating freeware I’ve found is simple translation of any type of data into a corresponding barcode.  On the surface, great.  But efficiency would be much greater if the barcode could actually store data.  But this seems only a feature of licensed software, which I am not interested in using for this project.  If something more exists, I have not found it yet.  But maybe a future update of this process could involve a more efficient barcoding system.  For now, I just make several barcodes of info for each possible chemical in the ‘master chemical list’ and scan them all together.  Then the spreadsheet nicely separates the info into separate columns.  This is the barcode system I’m currently using:

Free Barcode Generator - Barcoding Inc.

My instructor set me onto ETL.  While I haven’t done much research yet, this area seems very promising for developing a way to convert the spreadsheet data to xml.  I’m hoping to get a lot of this research done while on my trip to Anaheim Thurs. – Sun.  Well, this and the start of the next part of my IOOP project, already due in two more weeks!

The trip to Anaheim is for the safety aspect of my daytime job.  I’m going to a waste management workshop, an effective CHO workshop, and then I’m taking a CHO cert exam (which is why I said above that I need to split work-time partially for studying safety info).  I have my daytime job still for at least another 1.5yr while in school and this is a clear way to stay on top of promotions, since my ability to upgrade the engineering aspect doesn’t look so promising.  And who knows what will happen in the next few years.  A CHO cert could be valuable.  And I like to be prepared.  🙂

That’s this week in a nutshell!

So if I make it to Sunday evening at home with my family in one piece and also sane, I will be quite thankful.