Sunday, November 14, 2010

A couple of quick updates

Lunch with Professor Kraemer
Every quarter, there is an opportunity for a limited number of students from each class to eat lunch with the professor at the Allen Center. Normally, the logistics behind the lunch are handled by the professor and the class liaison. I've never done it myself, so I don't know about the work that goes into it, but I'm grateful for the classmates that do volunteer to be the liaison and ultimately put them together.

Last week, I joined a set of classmates for lunch with Professor Kraemer. It was the first one that I've been to this quarter, and it reminded me of how much I enjoy the lunches. First, the food at the Allen Center is pretty good. I'm not saying it's going to make a foodie's day, but all things considered, it is pretty good. Oh, and it's free for these lunches, so again, hard to complain. Second, it gives you an opportunity to interact with classmates, and since the lunches are assigned pseudo-randomly, you normally end up meeting new people. Finally, it is a great opportunity to chat with the professor outside of class. I've found that the professors are generally pretty candid in answering our questions during the lunches.

My New Coffee Cup... pretty insightful. I feel smarter everytime I take a sip from it.

Blog Redesign
I decided to change up the blog layout a little while ago for a few reasons. I wanted to separate the navigation (now on the left) from any personal information (on the right), hopefully improving usability. I also took advantage of the redesign to remove some links (mainly unpopular labels) and move things around based on the data that I pulled from the "In-Page Analytics" section of Google Analytics. Again, the goal was to make it easier to get to the things that are most popular, while decluttering the blog. I still think the main page is too busy (for my taste), but it would be tough to improve it without using pages, and I want to keep it simple. Main takeaway in doing the redesign was how useful analytics is. Was interesting to see what people do and don't click on.