Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Yay - I'm important?

I stumbled across something worthy of laughter this afternoon. A few years ago, I wrote a paper ridiculing various wireless router protocols, proposing an attacking method and even a couple of solutions. The paper wasn't fluff, but it wasn't a paper either. It was an undergrad class in research that prompted the article. Actually it was a power point presentation accompanied by a program I wrote to demonstrate statistical methods of cracking simple XOR encryption. This was turned into a paper (by me) and submitted to the Association of Computer Machinery Journal on my behalf (and of course with credit shared with my professor) without my knowledge. The content was cut to a 1/3 of the original size and i believe some grammatical changes were made but it was definitely my paper and sported my name (and Mario's ;). It seems however, that this article has been making the rounds.

Six months after publication, I was invited to present it at a University conference which I took as nothing more than a paper mill for people needing to be published. I declined. Shortly after that, I was asked over email for a brief technical interview regarding the contents of the original article. I initially declined the interview but strangely, after being insulted for declining decided to answer his questions. Today I found this If you look on page 9, source 8, that would be me.

OK, it's not lost on me that this is also an undergrad research paper, but give me a break. So the lesson learned is be careful what you read and what you believe because academics are even willing to quote me in an undergrad paper that's over 2 years old and believe me, I don't know nothing 'bout nothing.

Ross Hytnen

Friday, July 20, 2007

the republic of texas

ross drives to work on the capital of texas highway. which i find acceptable, especially because we live in austin. on my way to work i pass the republic of texas parkway. which i find less acceptable. i mean, seriously? i guess as a child i did not think it odd that we spent several entire years studying texas history. i think most texan children know texas history much better than national history, and lets not even think of international history. i remember one time in college literally arguing with a dead-serioius fellow aggie about whether texas or the u.s. would win if texas withdrew from the u.s. and waged war. again, seriously? i think my texan eyes were opened during my summers in the northwest. where were the oregon flags? why were the highway signs not in the shapes of little oregons? haha. texas is cool. case in point:

appropriately sized american flag on I35:

inappropriately sized texas flag 1/2 of a mile earlier on I35. where is the american flag? long live the republic ;)

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Flood Waters and Grand Openings

Sharon's busy serenading me with a well worn guitar so I will once again have the honor of sharing our weeks adventures with you. This week I'm offering you a brief photo essay rather than a journal entry.

With the never ending rain, you of course know that Lake Travis is close to the brink. Here is a photo of the rather rare opening of four floodgates at Mansfield Dam to counter the surge.

Charles and I have found that there are catfish hiding in the bushes and trees that provide some cover from the lively currents. (8 lbs)

Sharon and I have opened a new cafe we call "Hytnen's on the Bend". (Yea we stole the name, so what?) The patio is a little wet from installing a water mister in the rafters that is supposed to have a cooling effect. I'm dubious of its claim of 30 degrees but even 10 would be a pleasure. As you can see, we have foose ball and chess table available for patrons (and free wi-fi!).

On Sunday nights, we even have live music...

We found some cute coconut cups that go well with our little home made Jamaica.

Here I am being superfluous.

That's me, pretending to play chess as an advertisement for our new establishment.

This is me actually playing chess, about the time I met Sharon. A photographer took photos of each game in progress and gave a hard copy to the winner of each individual game. I still remember every move of this game two years ago, but I can't remember where I leave my keys from day to day.

And so until next time, I hope you enjoyed the photos and we can't wait to start receiving visitors to Hytnen's on the Bend!

Ross Hytnen
(So as not to confuse Cynthia)

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

urban cowboys

last night we began our soggy 4th of july celebration by enjoying some free tickets to a keith urban concert, courtesy of one of ross' co-workers.

the concert was downtown at the frank erwin center on the UT (t.u.) campus.

we both were impressed by keith's guitar skills, but were slightly weirded out by his 4, yes, count them FOUR backup guitarists and their tight pants. they had some songs that were pretty close to rock, which they performed on the big stage, and then moved to a small center stage for a more 'intimate country style'. ross isn't really a country music lover, but he was a good sport and wore his boots for the occasion.

i do like country music, not really keith's music, but i did enjoy hearing his guitar skills and the few hit songs of his that i do like.

Monday, July 02, 2007

summer CAMT

wednesday night i headed off to san antonio with 2 other teachers for what i suppose is my first business trip. yes, we were headed off to one of the largest math teacher conferences in the country, about 8000 teachers strong, at the convention center on the san antonio riverwalk. this was a last minute request from our principal so the nicer hotels on the riverwalk were basically booked so we stayed at the ramada limited not too far away. sometimes limited means rare, expensive, and valuable because there aren't very many of them. this was that other type of limited.

the conference consisted of 1 hr conference sessions all day thursday, all day friday, and saturday morning. there were hundreds to choose from. some were more popular than others. thanks to the fire marshall, the conference for the advancement of mathematics teaching (CAMT) was extremely interesting. once all the seats in the room were full, no other teachers were allowed into the room, they would need to find a different conference. no big deal, right? wrong. the conference periods had a 15 minute break between. but everyone was in such a big hurry to get to the next conference, they would begin leaving early. the conference leaders knew this, so their conferences started becoming shorter and shorter, so their attendees could get to the next session. they would then wait in hordes outside the classroom and start rushing in as soon as the doors opened. this means if you happened to go to a session that merely let out on time, or if you happened to need a drink or restroom break, you were definitely not making it to a popular session. unless you did the ever popular, sneak up on the side and work your way through the crowd of people that have been waiting twice as long as you have. rumor has it one lady got removed from CAMT because she could not control her anger towards these people. perhaps you think you would cleverly attend the session before the popular one held in the same room? no problem, they've already thought of that. everyone must leave the room between conferences to make it fair. this means if the one you wanted to go to was in the same room as you were already in, no chance of you getting back in the door because so many people are already waiting. it was crazy!!! i went to boring conferences to avoid the madness. i mean seriously...its a math conference?

despite all of that, the funniest part was actually the materials, or lack thereof. most conference leaders would hand out a CD or some handouts that were pretty useful to bring back for your classroom. but a lot of leaders did not have enough handouts. people would get downright nasty, demanding teachers from the same school share, or those that came in a little late did not deserve one, or storming out of the room when they didn't get a handout. my personal favorite moment of the conference was when a lady sitting next to me did not get a handout and seemed very upset. another lady nearby gave her one, and shared with another teacher from her school. the lady promptly got up and left. she just wanted the handout, not the lecture. even funnier was how angry the ladies at my table got about this, and spent the next 45 min talking badly about her.

all in all, i learned a few things, got some interesting ideas. also i got to meet up with friends from usaa at the riverwalk 2 of the 3 nights, and had a great time. CAMT 2007 is in the books.