Finding Stars and Winning Games

Author: Jonathan C.

I’ve decided to write an impromptu blog post just because there were just so many nice moments today. But first let’s talk about the struggles.

1: I have a Mac and it hates Swift and it just won’t work. I’ve called SWRI people, tried multiple methods, and it just won’t work. After consulting with my team and Raphael (thanks for trying your best to help me), I decided to just take the L (Katrina gets the credit for this phrase).

2: I made a meme for last Friday’s QOD about how aperture photometry and LSPR really gets in the way of getting to the “play” in work-play. This was so true today. I’ve been trying to do Aperture Photometry using AIJ and DS9 and it’s been really annoying. It’s so hard to scroll on these applications and my memory sucks so once I click away from the star field, I lose track of its position. Therefore, I’ve had to take photos for finding stars. If you look at my camera roll, it’s literally all photos of star pictures. In the afternoon, I decided to move to performing a LSPR for my most recent data and it failed. So then, I went back to doing Aperture Photometry during W/P and got values that were like 0.5 mags off from the JPL values, which made me feel really frustrated. 

But now let’s talk about the cool things. 

1: Although Swift couldn’t work on my computer, it sure did for my fellow Window teammates (Alice and Alex). The SWRI people recommended I send my input files to Alex so he could run it. I’m grateful I have teammates whom I can rely on when I have issues like these. With that, we are on track to finish our Orbit Integration Project. 

2: Alice, tried another method to do LSPR, and managed to make it work! This really reminded me of the value of collaboration since you get to be introduced to new perspectives and ways to approach problems. Also turns out, our magnitudes we calculated are well within the margin of error. That was a big stress relief!

3: During the Social Block, we played Deception and not to be too cocky here, but I’m pretty good at it. As an investigator, I could immediately tell who was suspicious and pressure them into guessing first. This way we could use the people who we thought were criminals to rule out things for us. I was pretty confident that Elane was the murderer when I noticed Antara mentioning that we should look at Aaron’s cards. I had a sudden realization Antara was the witness who was inching us toward the right direction. I turned my attention toward Aaron’s cards and got “Bat” and “Needle and Thread” correct. We also did a rock-paper-scissors tournament and Dr. R wrecked us.

4: During W/P, our team, Bread Swheat and Tears, is often the group that suggests playing games the most often. It’s not because we’re ahead on all our assignments, but it’s because we understand rest is important. Today, we played Codenames with Abby, Katrina, and Antara. Abby, Alice, and Antara were definitely ahead at first. Abby was ambitious, with her 4 cards clues. My team kinda stumbled at first, missing our guesses. However, at the end, we pulled a sudden miracle comeback. I used the clue “Toymato” or something along those lines. I was trying to point to Toyota (for car) and Tomato (for Salsa) and it worked! Katrina was thinking to choose Soldier, thinking it was related to Toy, but luckily she and I were on the same wavelength, and she had a gut feeling to steer away. In the end, we won the game! Abby found our comeback hilarious. 

5: At around 9pm PST, I decided to join a Zoom call to celebrate Sophia’s Birthday. But first I had to wait in the waiting room for like 5 minutes. I sent a message that triggered Haiku Bot. I got to talk with others about OD code, SWRI project, and witness other random cool stuff like Justin’s knee jumping thing. These spontaneous Zoom calls are always really cool. While I was working on my OD report, Team 8 was working on their OD code. It’s nice having fellow participants there to answer any question you have. 

Hi! I’m Jonathan, a rising senior at Irvington High School in Fremont, California. I like roller coasters, board games, and reading books. The SSP experience has been such a roller coaster ride, with so many ups and downs, but I’m so glad to be part of this amazing community.